West Health and Darthmouth-Hitchcock Health announced that they will provide telehealth services and geriatric emergency department (GED) training, education and other resources to four rural hospitals in a two-phase “hub and spoke” approach. Two of the hospitals are located in New Hampshire and two in Vermont. All four spoke sites will gain access to supplemental telehealth services provided by DHMC with an emphasis on geriatric nursing, transitional care management, and support of on-call geriatricians. These new partnerships will enable the four hospitals to earn national accreditation as Level 2 GEDs from the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP).
The initiative is the latest to emerge from a 2019 three-year research collaboration between West Health and D-HH, which also includes the creation of the nation’s first Level 1 accredited rural GED within DHMC. Its completion is expected in early 2021. Nearly 200 hospitals have received GED accreditation in the U.S.; nationally, only 12 hospitals have achieved Level 1 accreditation, all of which besides DHMC are in urban areas.