Report: “Maine Libraries Become Telehealth Hubs for Rural Health Care”
The Maine State Library launched a pilot telehealth program with 10 libraries across the state last year in communities with high instances of health issues or a lack of ready access to health care or technology at home. The goal, said Maine State Librarian Jamie Ritter, was to make access to health care more equitable.
“Some people have fewer opportunities to go to a specialist,” said Marijke Visser, director of library development at the Maine State Library.
Last year, there were 31 appointments for the telehealth equipment room, and so far this year there have been seven. The library has two staff members trained to help patrons who use the equipment.
The library does not keep records of who used the room to protect the privacy of personal and health information. At the end of each day, any information still on the system is erased by software provided by the Maine State Library.
About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.