make WWAY your homepage  Become a fan on facebook  Follow us on twitter  Receive RSS Newsfeeds  MEMBERS: Register | Login

NC expands psychiatry via video conferencing

READ MORE:
mentalhealth.jpg

EMERY P. DALESIO
Associated Press

RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- North Carolina is expanding the ability of doctors and other counselors to make long-distance evaluations of people who may be suffering mental breakdowns.

Gov. Pat McCrory was in Greenville on Friday to draw attention to the state's decision to expand the practice of psychiatric medicine by video conferencing.

State legislators committed $4 million over the next two years to establish a statewide "telepsychiatry" program to provide more mental health services in rural areas. It's based at East Carolina University's medical school and now connects about a dozen community hospitals in eastern North Carolina.

State officials say having psychiatrists available to consult with remote hospitals when troubled patients show up can cut hospital emergency department wait times, reduce involuntary commitments and save local law enforcement the time needed to transport patients.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.

»