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Nursing homes go high tech, connect elderly with doctors hundreds of miles away

Some nursing homes have gone high tech to keep your elder mom or dad from the stress of repeated hospital visits. (WSYX/WTTE)

MONROE, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) -- Some nursing homes have gone high tech to keep your elder mom or dad from the stress of repeated hospital visits.

A doctor can be at their bedside and not even in the same state through TripleCare technology.

It's good old-fashioned bedside manner mixed with the digital age.

"I have a resident that is complaining of shortness of breath."

Doctor David Chess is paying William Philips a visit. He's rolled into a nursing home room while hundreds of miles away at his home office. Telemedicine connects doctors with your elder relative any time of night.

"[It's] sort of like talking to the doctor on the phone," said Philips.

Doctor Chess, founder of TripleCare, said the standard of care is a leap up from a phone call.

"Getting the doctor to the bedside when a patient was ill would make an enormous difference in people's lives," said Dr. Chess.

Doctors walk nurses through an exam. They can even listen in on the stethoscope.

"The focus is on what we need to do safely take care of that one individual," said OhioLiving Mt. Pleasant Nurse Director, Denise Brown.

Brown said the more an elder visits a hospital, the increased chances there are for a relapse.

"It's better quality of care to keep everybody here," said Brown.

It's also less stress on the elder and their family.

"If there's a critical incident that happens at 3 o'clock in the morning, we don't have to have the family meet the elder at the emergency room. Our doctor here can take care of it," said Brown.

It's a diagnosis from a distance.

"I was sleeping on my left side. That would explain it," said Dr. Chess.

At 83 years old, Philips has a heart health history.

"I would have been happier I suppose if the doctor had been here, but how long would it have taken him to get here," said Philips.

The doctor's bedside manner is the same. The difference is having the advantage of keeping an elder where they're most comfortable.

Dr. Chess said the service is offered at nursing home facilities in eight states with the hopes of adding three more before the summer.

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