How Government is Keeping Telemedicine from Saving Stroke Victims

The most widely used treatment for stroke victims is a clot-busting drug called tissue plasminogen activater (tPA), but it must be administered within three hours of the first symptoms.

Problem: timing is critical, and an expert doctor must decide whether tPA is appropriate. But many hospitals do not have an expert.

Solution: telemedicine.

Obstacle: state laws that prohibit practicing across state lines and the Stark Amendments, which prevent financial arrangements between physicians and facilities. [link]

Comments (2)

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  1. Joe S. says:

    Interesting post.

  2. Mike E. says:

    We keep hearing about how government needs to encourage/force the private sector to adopt health information technology. It appears in this case that the greatest obstacle is the government itself.