Aug 6, 2019
Logan Plaster chats with Brian Skow, M.D., about Avera’s digital hub in Sioux Falls, SD, which has 10 different health care services, including ICU, Pharmacy, Hospitalist, Senior Care, School Nurse, Virtual Consult, Avera Now (direct to consumer), Prison, Specialty Clinic, Indian Health Services, Behavioral Health and Emergency on call 24x7 anywhere in the United States. Skow serves as the Avera eCARE Chief Medical Officer and the Medical Director of Avera eCare Emergency, an affiliation of Avera Health, a 31-hospital integrated medical system based in Sioux Falls. In addition, he has served as the Medical Director of Avera eCare Emergency and in this role has logged more than 15,000 hours of direct patient telehealth experiences. Now Avera eCARE Emergency program has grown to more than 200 sites across 16 states. Avera’s e-Emergency system enables physicians to be on hand much quicker at rural critical care hospitals, which can literally be life-saving in certain cardiac situations. These critical care hospitals have responded very positively because there is often a significant shortage of physicians in rural areas, notes Skow, especially when it comes to emergency back-up services. Another service that is particularly well received, he says, is behavioral health.