President Donald Trump and Secretary of Veterans Affairs David Shulkin, M.D. unveiled the VA's new telehealth program on Thursday.
The program allows doctors who are far from their patients to still be able to see and talk to their patients, especially those who live in rural areas. Patients can go to a nearby medical facility where there are nurses and technicians or use devices from home. The doctors will be able to see their patients and discuss what may be concerning them.
"We're expanding the ability of veterans to connect with their VA health care team from anywhere using mobile application on the veterans' own phone or the veterans' own computer," Trump said. "This will significantly expand access to care for our veterans, especially for those who need help in the area of mental health which is a bigger and bigger request and also in suicide prevention."
Shulkin touted that they can use telehealth for 50 different specialties, including tele-dermatology, tele-intensive care, and tele-dentistry.
Shulkin said the expanded program came with assistance from the Office of American Innovation and the Department of Justice.
"We call it ‘anywhere to anywhere health care,'" Shulkin said.
Shulkin then demonstrated the VA Video Connect system for Trump with a veteran patient in Oregon. Trump and Shulkin were able to see a rash on the patient from the White House.
Shulkin also said veterans can download an app onto their phones to schedule appointments.