Leslie Eiland, M.D., at left, heads up a telehealth initiative focused on diabetes.
Leslie Eiland, M.D., at left, heads up a telehealth initiative focused on diabetes.

If you have diabetes and live in rural Nebraska, chances are pretty slim that you will have direct access to an endocrinologist.

Most of the state’s endocrinologists are in Omaha or Lincoln.

But, thanks to a telehealth initiative developed by UNMC and the Nebraska Medicine Diabetes Center, things are looking up for patients with diabetes in rural communities.

The initiative is spearheaded by UNMC’s Leslie Eiland, M.D., a Columbus, Neb., native.

Using a large video monitor and the state-of-the-art Vidyo system, Dr. Eiland and her nurse, Andrea Hoge, conduct half-day clinics four times each week via telehealth.

In Nebraska, the initiative involves hospitals in Scottsbluff, Hastings, Geneva and Columbus.

Dr. Eiland serves as a consultant, working closely with the patient’s primary care doctor, and typically sees between eight to 10 patients during a half-day clinic.

Thanks to the initiative, patients have access to a diabetes specialist without having to leave their community.