The renowned Arizona Telemedicine Program (ATP), established in 1996 at the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson, came up against a workforce roadblock in 2013.
Hospitals, clinics and other health-care organizations did not know how to connect with the physicians, nurses and other health professionals who were available to help meet the organizations' telehealth needs.
Ronald S. Weinstein, MD, co-founder and director of the ATP, came up with a solution: a “Service Provider Showcase (SPS)” that would link the organizations with the telemedicine professionals who were trained and available to fill their needs.
The first Telemedicine and Telehealth Service Provider Showcase (SPS), held in Phoenix in October 2014, drew 243 attendees, including 35 telehealth vendors. Those numbers grew with the second SPS, held in June 2016 in Phoenix, and the third, SPS 2017, which brought in 411 attendees with 41 vendors and 29 speakers, along with 38 poster presentations.
An article, “The Third National Telemedicine and Telehealth Service Provider Showcase Conference: Advancing Telehealth Partnerships,” published in the May 31 edition of the journal Telemedicine and e-Health, highlights the success of SPS 2017, held in October in Phoenix. (To read the article for free: bit.ly/2sAKCPN)
“The SPS 2017 program evaluators included attendees, speakers and exhibitors. The knowledge attendees gained was characterized, by all three groups, as forward-looking and practical," the article notes.
"SPS 2017 succeeded in identifying and focusing on solutions for issues, challenges and barriers impacting the rapidly expanding telehealth service segment of the health-care industry. The growing interest in this annual SPS conference series apparently reflects the program committee’s successes in identifying practical issues and potential solutions."
Among the presentations at SPS 2017 were:
- “Telehealth as a Strategic Asset: Are You Ready?,” Alan C. Roga, MD, who heads the direct-to-consumer service Teladoc
- “Embracing Direct to Consumer Telemedicine Beyond On-Demand,” Brian Wayling, assistant vice president for telehealth services, Intermountain Healthcare, Utah
- “Saving a Rural Hospital Through Telemedicine,” James J. Dickson, CEO, Copper Queen Community Hospital, a critical access hospital in Bisbee, Ariz.
In the 17-question conference evaluations, attendees wrote rave reviews of SPS 2017, including:
“I go to five to six conferences per year, and this was by far the most interesting, beneficial and relevant to me. Thank you for offering more advanced and in-depth content.”
“Best telemedicine conference around.”
Attendees also described their SPS experiences as meeting their expectations as they develop their own telehealth programs. They described the conference as relevant, practical and comprehensive.
Renamed the Service Provider Summit, this year’s event will be held in Glendale, Ariz., Oct. 8-9. SPS 2018’s conference partner is Scottsdale-based Global Med. Honorary chair is Ronald S. Weinstein, MD, director, ATP. Serving as co-chairs are Dale C. Alverson, MD, medical director, Center for Telehealth, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, and Elizabeth A. Krupinski, PhD, co-director, Southwest Telehealth Resource Center.
For more information and to register for SPS 2018, please visit ttspsworld.com
About the University of Arizona Health Sciences
The University of Arizona Health Sciences is the statewide leader in biomedical research and health professions training. The UA Health Sciences includes the UA Colleges of Medicine (Phoenix and Tucson), Nursing, Pharmacy and Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, with main campus locations in Tucson and the growing Phoenix Biomedical Campus in downtown Phoenix. From these vantage points, the UA Health Sciences reaches across the state of Arizona and the greater Southwest to provide cutting-edge health education, research, patient care and community outreach services. A major economic engine, the UA Health Sciences employs approximately 4,000 people, has approximately 800 faculty members and garners more than $140 million in research grants and contracts annually. For more information: uahs.arizona.edu (Follow us: Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | LinkedIn | Instagram)