The director of the Stroke Center at Banner-University Medicine Neuroscience Institute spoke to the need for data like that from the TELECAST study and how the COVID-19 pandemic might push telestroke care forward.
“Part of the lack of progress in that area has just been inertia…but part of it has also been payment mechanisms. There hasn’t really been a way to get paid for that service.”
Prior to its cancelation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, data scheduled to be presented at the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) 2020 Annual Meeting from the TELECAST trial suggest that telestroke care can provide benefits for patients by improving access. The analysis was conducted by Matthew Ronck, MD, vascular neurology fellow, University of Minnesota, and colleagues.
Although the findings might be somewhat anticipated based on what literature already suggests, for Jeremy Payne, MD, PhD, director, Stroke Center, Banner-University Medicine Neuroscience Institute, data are like these are necessary to help improve the state of telestroke care. Payne, who was not part of the study, described to NeurologyLive in an interview much of what has held the field back in his experience.
Payne also shared his thoughts on how the ongoing pandemic may help push the progress in telestroke along—a feeling that has been echoed in a number of specialties—particularly in its attempts to overcome the obstacles faced by factors such as reimbursement and HIPAA compliance.
For more AAN 2020 coverage, click here.
Ronck M, Ngo M, Jaton E, et al. Inpatient Telestroke Coverage Improves Guideline-based Diagnostic Stroke Evaluation: Results from the TELECAST trial. Neurology. 2020;94(15 Suppl): 5332.