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What is Telehealth? Telehealth is the use of electronic information and telecommunications technologies to support long-distance clinical health care, patient and professional health-related education, public health and health administration.

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A student in the Greenville County Public School District completes her class assignments from home due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Courtesy of Greenville County Schools

Students in South Carolina’s public schools have spent much of 2020 attending school virtually after face-to-face instruction was limited due to Covid-19. Schools weren’t alone as they scrambled to operate in a virtual model. In the wake of the pandemic, healthcare providers also rushed to transition many services online.

Lawmakers Rally for Broadband, Yet Affordability Remains an Issue

Oct 19, 2020
Matt Hiatt with PCC looking at Broadband maps.
Ryan McGillan

In South Carolina, many children were unable to participate in online schooling when the global pandemic struck earlier this year. Similarly, hundreds of thousands of people in the Palmetto State could not receive telehealth services or work remotely because they lacked access to high-speed internet service. 

Dr. Lommel preparing for a patient visit via Telehealth.
J.T. Hydrick

On March 6, 2020, Congress passed the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act. While it may not have garnered as much attention as the CARES act, its impact should not be overlooked.

Healthcare providers are relying on telehealth to treat patients during the pandemic.

As the impact of the Coronavirus continues to evolve and expand, doctors and healthcare providers are continually being forced to reimagine the way they deliver care to their patients on a fundamental level. Providers are relying on live video appointments with patients, commonly known as telehealth, to address concerns during the pandemic.

How COVID Changed the Way You See Your Doctor

Jun 11, 2020

The coronavirus forced our healthcare system to make sweeping operational changes. In rural health clinics and in the state’s largest hospitals, providers started relying more on telehealth to see patients through live video to limit exposure to COVID-19.

Psychiatrists Turn to Telehealth During COVID-19 Pandemic

Apr 13, 2020
 A psychiatrist uses live video to treat a patient remotely from her office at the Charleston Mental Health Center.
South Carolina Telehealth Alliance

As clinics and hospitals ask patients to stay home to limit exposure to the coronavirus, more mental health providers are turning to telehealth to close gaps between providers and their patients.

Researchers Discuss Telehealth's Role in Coronavirus Response

Mar 23, 2020
File photo
S.C. Telehealth Alliance

In his downtown Charleston office, Dr. David McSwain is getting ready for a conference call with dozens of pediatric telehealth experts from across the country. As the co-founder and lead investigator on SPROUT (Supporting Pediatric Research on Outcomes and Utilization of Telehealth), Dr. McSwain is bringing the group together to discuss how each hospital system is using telehealth to address the coronavirus pandemic.

Doctors Urge Common Sense, Caution in Response to Coronavirus

Mar 9, 2020
File photo of a woman washing her hands
Arlington County, VA [CC BY-SA 2.0] via Flickr

As COVID-19 continues to spread around the world, doctors at the Medical University of South Carolina have spent much of the past few weeks reminding people to use common sense, and not to panic.

“If you think you are sick, the best thing to do is to stay home,” says Dr. Amanda Parks, an infectious disease specialist at MUSC. “For something like a respiratory virus, generally, what we’re going to do in the office or the ER is the same thing you’re going to do at home which is supportive care.”

Doctor Provides Opioid Addiction Counseling for Pregnant Mothers

Mar 3, 2020
Dr. Guille has a consultation via telehealth
Julia Shillinglaw

Dr. Constance Guille is fighting the opioid epidemic in her own way. She is a psychologist from the Medical University of South Carolina, and was concerned with the effects that addiction has on both a mom's health and her infant's.

Telepsychiatry Plays Critical Role in Residency Training

Feb 17, 2020
A doctor and patient use tele-psychiatry for an appointment.
Taylor Crouch and Marina Ziehe

Dr. Josh Jackson found his calling in medical school, after his first experience with psychiatry.

“I really felt like I could connect with the patients on a different level than I could on some other specialties,” said Jackson.

He’s the chief resident in psychiatry at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine, preparing for life after residency training when he’ll be a practicing psychiatrist. He says part of his training involved telehealth, using live video to conduct appointments with patients in remote parts of the state while he stayed in Columbia.

Robinson meeting with his doctor via telehealth.
John Lewis/SCETV

Andrea Robinson is a self-described workaholic. He says he took a lot of pride in his job leading a construction crew. When his doctor told him that he needed to slow down for the sake of his health, he didn’t want to listen.

“I was hard-headed and I kind of overdid it,” Robinson says. “My doctor was concerned for my health and he sent an email to my job and said I couldn’t do it no more.”

North Charleston firefighters station.
Julia Shillinglaw

Edwyn Barnett is a firefighter at the North Charleston Fire Department. He and his team encounter traumatic events on a weekly basis. They never know what to expect or who might have been severely injured or killed. Barnett knows the severity of his job especially after having to respond to the death of one of his own classmates.

Innovation in Pharmacy School Transforms Rural Care

Jan 28, 2020
Dr. James Sterrett teleprecepting with a Pharmacy Student.
John Lewis/SCETV

Ryan Rosenblatt is working toward his doctor of pharmacy degree at the Medical University of South Carolina. As part of the four-year plan, he has to go to clinics to treat patients. This is done with the supervision and guidance of a preceptor: an experienced pharmacist who serves as a mentor and helps students make the right judgment calls for patients.

Florence School Uses Telehealth for Concussion Follow-up Care

Jan 20, 2020
Thomas Woods (center) with his mom, Wendy, and athletic trainer Joe Cauble use telehealth at school to see McLeod sports medicine physicians after Thomas sustained a concussion during football practice.
John Lewis, Julia Shillingshaw/SCETV

Thomas Woods doesn’t remember exactly what happened during Labor Day football practice, but he’ll try to piece it together.

“I remember being on the ground,” Woods says, “and my coach asking me what was wrong and trying to explain that my head was hurting.”

Woods is a starting linebacker for The King’s Academy, a private school in Florence. After the big hit, coach Keith Rogers had teammates drive Thomas home and drop off his truck at his house.

Telehealth Helps Save Child's Life

Jan 17, 2020
Annie Nichols recovers from traumatic brain injur
Julia Shillingshaw/SCETV

Time is crucial for a traumatic brain injury especially for Annie Nichols who was four at the time of her accident. When she slipped and hit her head in the garage, her parents, Kelsey and Billy, didn’t think much of it. “It was a bad fall,” Billy said. “She cried, but it wasn’t the worst thing you’ve ever heard.” But later that day when Annie starting screaming in pain, they immediately rushed her to Tidelands Waccamaw Community Hospital in Murrells Inlet, where she had to be placed on a breathing machine to hold her airway open.