UVa Medical Center grant to aid rural patients

UVAThe University of Virginia Health System says a federal grant will make it easier for its doctors to meet with frail, seriously ill patients via videoconference.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has allocated $253,330 to the program designed to help patients living in rural locations far from hospitals.

The Daily Progress reports that the system will set up videoconferencing locations at nine rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and dialysis centers throughout central Virginia.

That joins a network of more than 100 telemedicine locations throughout the state.

Health system officials say the ability to meet with doctors through videoconferencing will cut down on arduous hospital trips and allow chronically ill patients more opportunities to follow-up with their doctors.