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Avera eCARE Supports Local Care in More Than 10 Percent of Nation’s Critical Access Hospitals

May 27, 2016 09:30AM ● By MED Magazine

There are 1,331 certified “Critical Access Hospitasl” (CAHs) across the nation, and Avera eCARE now serves more than 10 percent of these facilities through services that include Avera eICU CARE, eEmergency, ePharmacy and eConsult. Avera extends specialty care to distant rural facilities through interactive video and advanced computer monitoring technology.


“Avera’s mission through eCARE is to make healthcare more accessible to underserved populations, most specifically, those living in rural areas. That’s why we are particularly excited to be reaching 10 percent of Critical Access Hospitals, not only in our immediate area, but across multiple states,” said Deanna Larson, Avera Health Senior Vice President of Quality and eCARE. 


CAHs have no more than 25 inpatient beds, and are located in a rural area, at least 35 miles away from any other hospital. CAHs focus on providing care for common conditions and outpatient care, while referring other conditions to larger hospitals.


Examples of eCARE include:

●   A patient receiving intensive care in his home community through an Avera eICU CARE “wired bed”

●   A local emergency team getting backup assistance by pushing a button on the wall to access emergency medicine specialists

●   A patient receiving a clinic visit with a specialist through eConsult at her home clinic or hospital

●   Local doctors and nurses relying on of a pharmacist to review and approve medication orders through as a check against possible medication errors.


Avera eCARE services reach across 10 states, and have been supported in development and growth by the Helmsley Charitable Trust.