ALBANY, GA (WALB) - New technology is preparing nursing students at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College for jobs in the evolving health care industry.
Telehealth technology can be especially important in rural areas where people don't have access to specialists.
ABAC's use of the technology is drawing attention across the state and country.
Nursing students at ABAC don't need to go far to get experience with real world medical tools.
"All colleges are going to teach a fundamentals of physical assessment class in their nursing programs. The key to us incorporating telehealth for our program is we're the first college in the state of Georgia to do such a thing," said Brittany Student.
The Telehealth equipment was donated by Tift Regional Medical Center.
And Nurse Tammy Carter said it will help the students with their assessment skills and familiarize them with the way hospitals now use tablets for notes.
"Telehealth is kind of the next step in that, evolving of going into the information part of technology as far as nursing and health care," said Tammy Carter, nursing instructor.
In the past, for a simple ear exam, all you'd need in an odascope to look in and check it out. But with telehealth technology, you can zoom right in with a computer. And you'll get clear images to help make the diagnosis.
You can even set up broadcasts to watch real time examinations in other parts of the world or get a check up with your doctor if you're out of town.
"It's increased my assessment ability tremendously. You get to see things that you wouldn't see with a regular othescope or a regular thylmescope," said Benton.
The school will also now offer a National Certified Telehealth Presenter's program, which will help certified students like Benton jump up the list when applying for jobs.
"It gives her the option for facilities that uses telehealth. Nursing homes, hospitals, mental health clinics. They will be able to use her immediately," said Benton.
Benton said she's happy to get the experience and see her alma matter staying ahead of the curve.
"With health care you need to be innovative and that starts at the school," said Benton.