Why Moving to a Smaller Town Is No Longer a Danger to Your Health: Health Advances to Know About

Posted on: 6 October 2016

As many people age and go through their lives, they may feel a love-hate relationship with the idea of moving to a small town or smaller city. On the one hand, the relaxed lifestyle, space, and peace and quiet are all extremely appealing. However, many people worry that by moving to a small town or city will deprive them of the high-quality medical care that they may need in the case of a medical emergency. While smaller hospitals do not necessarily have all of the equipment and benefits of a large hospital in a big city, new trends in modern medicine have made small-town hospitals safer and more effective in the event that citizens in the area need their services. Get to know more about some of these health advances so that you can better decide whether you can finally make the small-town move you have been considering.

Teleneurology Services

Neurologists are highly trained specialists that focus on the nervous system. Because this is such a specific field, many smaller towns and cities do not keep a neurologist on staff in their hospitals. However, in the event of a neurological emergency such as a stroke or brain hemorrhage, neurological services are required immediately to avoid serious complications or even death.

This is where teleneurology services can come into play and save lives. Teleneurology is a service that connects these smaller hospitals with on-call neurologists through the use of technology. Through video- and phone-conferencing, any case of neurological significance can be looked at and dealt with by a trained neurologist even if they are miles away from the actual patient. They can provide advice and guidance and oversee a person's immediate treatment so that safe recovery and treatment are more likely.

Teleneurology is one of the most beneficial remote services for patients in emergency situations due to the fact that strokes require very fast action and treatment. However, other services like radiology, cardiology, and the like can also benefit from such access to telespecialists.

Collaborative Efforts with Other Hospitals

Because of the speed of communication and the need for rural hospital access to different and evolving technologies, in both standard and emergency care, many smaller hospitals and clinics have developed collaborative relationships that help to provide all residents with the highest standard of care. Whether the collaboration is between two towns or cities in close proximity or large cities providing service and assistance to smaller ones, these collaborations improve access to care for small-town residents.

Two hospitals in neighboring towns, for example, may together purchase newer and more expensive equipment to share between the two hospitals and allow the residents of both towns to access it. Larger cities may loan out equipment or physicians to smaller hospitals on a rotating basis. And, of course, a strong relationship between a small-town hospital and one in a larger city will mean that if a person needs more intensive or specialized care, they can be referred directly to the larger hospital for swift care. These collaborations and networks of care allow small-town hospitals to ensure the best care is provided at all times.

Now that you know a few of the advances in healthcare that can make living in a small town safer for your health, you can decide whether or not you are ready to take the leap into small-town life.