Kaiser Health News / The Baltimore Sun, February 12, 2014
An intensive care unit nurse in a small-town hospital on Maryland's scenic Eastern Shore suspected that a patient had necrotizing fasciitis, the so-called "flesh-eating" disease. The condition is rare. Even experienced intensive care doctors seldom see it, and, since it was nighttime, no such physician was in the ICU. Pinning down the diagnosis was critical?and in this case Berlin, Md.'s Atlantic General Hospital had back-up. A critical care doctor 125 miles away was monitoring the patient's health via voice, video and high-speed data lines constantly streaming information about vital signs, medications, test results and X-rays, a telemedicine service known as Maryland eCare.