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UW’s WIND, WyTN Celebrate Telehealth Awareness Week

September 20, 2022
people posing for camera
On Sept. 15, Gov. Mark Gordon signed a formal proclamation endorsing Wyoming’s participation -- including UW’s Wyoming Institute for Disabilities -- in Telehealth Awareness Week, which highlights the benefits of telehealth as a private, effective and convenient way to access health care. From left are Andrea Shipley, WIND senior project coordinator; Canyon Hardesty, WIND associate director; Kevin Smith, telehealth manager at Cheyenne Regional Medical Center; the governor; Dr. James Bush, Wyoming Medicaid medical director; Tai Baker, WIND program manager; and Brittany Brigham, WIND project coordinator. (Michael Pearlman Photo)

The Wyoming Telehealth Network (WyTN), which includes the Wyoming Institute for Disabilities (WIND) at the University of Wyoming, is celebrating Telehealth Awareness Week Sept. 18-24. 

WyTN is a collaboration between WIND in UW’s College of Health Sciences and health care advocates in Wyoming. WyTN contracts with the Wyoming Department of Health to promote telehealth to address rural health care challenges faced across the state. These challenges include access to mental health care and specialty care, long travel times with bad weather and travel expenses. 

WyTN supports hospitals, providers and specialists to increase access to care and improve the health of Wyoming residents. WyTN does this by providing information and resources to patients and providers; securing Zoom access; providing educational opportunities, such as monthly webinars; and assisting with technology and telehealth best practices. 

Gov. Mark Gordon recently signed a formal proclamation endorsing Wyoming’s participation in Telehealth Awareness Week, which highlights the benefits of telehealth as a private, effective and convenient way to access health care. 

Gordon also presented Kevin Smith, telehealth manager at Cheyenne Regional Medical Center, with the first-ever Dr. James Bush Award for Excellence in Telehealth. Smith is a UW alumnus and has accomplished outstanding work -- including helping to remove barriers to implementation and adoption -- as an innovator in the field of telehealth. The award, named after Bush, the state Medicaid medical director, was supported by the UW College of Health Sciences, WIND, WyTN and the Wyoming Telehealth Consortium. 

Telehealth uses electronic information and telecommunications technologies -- such as smartphones, computer tablets and monitors -- to provide medical appointments, health education for patients and providers, and health management. Telehealth securely connects patients and their health care providers when an in-person visit is not necessary or available. Visits include real-time, live interactions with a provider, secure chats, remote monitoring for chronic disease management and other technologies as needed. 

During Telehealth Awareness Week, WyTN encourages residents to learn more about telehealth. 

For more information, visit www.wyomingtelehealth.org.

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