As a 5.2 percent decrease in OB-GYN residency applicants threatens to worsen the existing OB-GYN shortage (as reported by the Association of American Medical Colleges), telemedicine is an essential component to minimizing access to care barriers for pregnant patients in underserved communities.
Already, more than half of U.S. counties lack even a single OB-GYN, a situation likely to worsen as fewer medical school graduates enter OB-GYN residencies. Amid this shortage, pregnant women experience major challenges to accessing timely prenatal care. A teleMaternal-Fetal Medicine program can help by supporting existing maternity providers and reducing the need for pregnant women to travel to yet another specialist if she has a high-risk pregnancy.
Access TeleCare’s teleMaternal-Fetal Medicine programs provide essential specialist support to maternity providers for high-risk pregnancies and to imaging centers and sonographers for ultrasound interpretations.
Access TeleCare’s MFM programs keep more than 90 percent of expectant families in their local communities for delivery, even as the worsening OB-GYN shortage forces many pregnant women to travel farther from home for maternity care.
“Telemedicine allows us to provide consistent, ongoing care for patients, and enables us to develop relationships with onsite teams to strengthen the entire maternity care environment,” said Access TeleCare’s chief of maternal-fetal medicine, Dr. Amanda Horton.
Access TeleCare’s MFM specialists and advanced sonographers work with hospitals, birthing centers, independent imaging centers, community-based OB-GYNs, and outpatient clinics around the country to provide highly skilled diagnostics and treatment for women with high-risk pregnancies. Together, the collaboration between the tele-MFM team and local providers allows more patients to get the care they need within their own communities – reducing the need for travel, improving outcomes, and strengthening local health care resources.
Learn more about Access TeleCare’s teleMaternal-Fetal Medicine programs.