Virtual Health Clinic

Virtual Health Clinic
Posted on 11/25/2019
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The Mary Rutan Virtual Health Clinic at Indian Lake Schools is now serving student and staff member patients. 

Utilizing the latest in health care technology to deliver expert convenient care, students and staff have virtual access to providers at the Mary Rutan Hospital Urgent Care without ever leaving the school nurse’s office. This fall, teams working to bring the service to school improved online connections between the Urgent Care and the school buildings.  In addition, Mary Rutan Hospital Virtual Health has installed the necessary equipment and health care expertise to make this service possible when parents give consent. 

“I have technology to listen to heart sounds, look in ears, at skin and in mouths,” said Dr. Deron Horman, a physician at Mary Rutan Hospital Urgent Care. “The school can only connect with us if the school nurse is available,” he said. “The nurse will play a key role, acting as an extension of the provider,  in making this a convenient and smooth process.”  

Clinics are housed at ILES and ILMS. ILHS students have access with the nurse at either of those buildings, if needed. When a student visits the school nurse exhibiting symptoms that the nurse considers appropriate for possible treatment, the student’s parents will be contacted. If parents consent, the student will be put into the queue at the Mary Rutan Urgent Care via the Virtual Health Care Clinic at school. With assistance from the school nurse, health care professionals at the urgent care are able to perform strep tests, flu tests and more.  Billing will be to the patient’s insurance and the charges are the same as going to the Urgent Care facility. 

Virtual Health has benefits beyond parents’ convenience and peace of mind. For children without a family physician or transportation to get to a primary care provider, the program offers the potential to improve access to routine care.  It also seeks to improve chronic disease management among the student population, with the goal of ultimately improving outcomes and overall health.

“Reducing absenteeism and improving students’ – and often employees’ access to health care is really the goal here. Our school nurse will do the triaging to determine who can most benefit from a virtual health visit, enhancing the typical visit to our nurse’s office,”  said Rob Underwood, Superintendent Indian Lake Schools. “If we can keep them at school and take away one more reason for them to miss, that’s what superintendents like.”