Video consultation hours for children and young people ensure medical care in rural areas / access also for vulnerable groups – delegation got their bearings in Lübeck

Lübeck/Kiel – A delegation of well-known health experts in the Virtual Diabetes Ambulance (ViDiKi) for children and young people at the University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein (UKSH) in Lübeck was today convinced of how important and indispensable digital solutions have become in medical care, especially in rural areas. Among them were the chairmen of the AOK Federal Association Dr. Carola Reimann and the FDP member of the Bundestag Christine Aschenberg-Dugnus. “By using modern telemedicine technology, we are actively shaping innovative care in Schleswig-Holstein and making everyday life much easier for the affected families,” says Tom Ackermann, CEO of AOK NordWest. This is achieved through video consultations at UKSH, where children and young people with type 1 diabetes who are insured with AOK NordWest and their parents receive digital advice from pediatric diabetologists. The head of the diabetes clinic, senior physician Dr. Simone von Sengbusch explained that the monthly video consultation has a very positive effect on the health prognosis for children and young people. Study results from the model phase have impressively demonstrated this.

In the pilot phase, the experts from the diabetes clinic at the UKSH in Lübeck and Kiel carried out almost 4,000 video consultations with the young patients and their parents, during which they continuously evaluated their glucose values. In the online consultation hours, which were carried out in addition to the personal advice on site, the parents and the young people received important information about how they can optimize their therapy and thus permanently improve their metabolism. The 240 participating families all rated the offer positively.

“Our experience has shown that regular data conversations, guidance and motivation have a better effect than just one personal conversation per quarter with the attending physician. Furthermore, the offer influenced therapy satisfaction and significantly reduced the strain on the parents. In addition, the children’s metabolic status improved significantly after twelve months,” says Dr. af Sengbusch. With a joint contract between UKSH and AOK NordWest, the positive results from the nationwide unique telemedicine project have meanwhile been transferred to the care of young AOK insureds in Schleswig- Holstein.

The chairman of the board of AOK Federal Association, Dr. Carol Reimann, ready. “Not only since Corona have there been countless children with vulnerable health and/or social disadvantages. They often live in social hotspots or more remote places in the country. To do this, we need regional solutions that take into account the situation and the possibilities on the ground and which reach the children directly or digitally in their living environments in sports, at school, in the kindergarten or in the countryside. Where there is almost no infrastructure, innovative approaches ensure that health services reach people or that people come to the services. ViDiKi creates just that – access and networks. Ensuring equal living conditions is central to social cohesion in Germany. There is still a significant need for action here,” says Dr. Carol Reimann.

For FDP member of the Bundestag Christine Aschenberg-Dugnus Telemedicine is an important building block in the digitization of the healthcare system.”Therefore, as traffic light coalition partners, we also agreed in the coalition agreement to enable telemedicine services such as video consultation hours and telemonitoring. As a health expert, I am grateful for the opportunity to inform myself about telemedicine treatment methods within type 1 diabetes treatment here in Lübeck. As an FDP parliamentary group, we will continue to work to strengthen digital treatment methods, especially in rural areas. Because this is above all in the patients’ interest.”

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