Stawell Regional Health's MacPherson Smith residential care residents were eager to try new technology which will enable them to social interact with families and friends.
Two residents were involved in a test run out in the garden where their interview was conducted by the Stawell Times-News.
Stawell Regional Health have acquired four brand new mobile telehealth/social interaction workstations, two for use in the Simpson Ward and two for Macpherson Smith Residential Care, with the support of a grant through Stawell Gold Mine.
The workstations will allow residents to access technology that will make a difference in their everyday ability to connect socially and with professional health services through telehealth.
Stawell Regional Health chief executive Kate Pryde said she was "thrilled" to have received this offer and opportunity to partner with the Stawell Gold mines, andit was an excellent demonstration of how we all have been "in it together" caring for our local community during very difficult times.
"We are very grateful for their support and want to extend a very big thank you to the Mines' Management team," she said.
"Having this up to date and very mobile technology available ensures that our patients in the ward and our residents at Macpherson Smith have as good an opportunity to connect with specialist services of their choice as a metropolitan person - but without the risky, costly and time-consuming requirement to travel."
MacPherson Smith manager Tina Joseph emphasised the endless list of use they are planning for the workstations.
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"Other than ensuring our residents receive the ongoing external clinical support they may need via telehealth, we also find that there is a real mental health benefit: residents feels more upbeat after they have connected for a face to face interaction with families far away," she said.
"People who have dementia also find significant benefits playing brain teaser games, completing puzzles or listening to music of their choice."
At both Simpson Ward and Macpherson Smith any clinician or person wanting to have a virtual consult/visit with a patient or resident can book a time for a Facetime Session (on iPhone) or a Zoom meeting (when using an Android phone).
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"Our grants program is run every six months," he said.
"This round was run a little different given the current coronavirus restrictions.
"We invited a number of organisations who we thought were most likely to be impacted by the restrictions such as education, emergency services and health care primarily."
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