FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 4, 2021
BENCHMARK AND STATIONMD JOIN FORCES FOR INDIANA’S FIRST-IN-KIND PARTNERSHIP TO IMPROVE MEDICAL CARE FOR RESIDENTS WITH DISABILITES
Ft. Wayne, IN and Maplewood, NJ—Benchmark Human Services (Benchmark) and StationMD have launched a partnership to ensure all of Benchmark’s Indiana clients have 24/7 access to a doctor anytime they need.
Benchmark provides residential and community-based services to people who have intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), and StationMD is a physician practice that uses telemedicine to deliver medical care exclusively to people with disabilities around the country.
This partnership is a bold move by Benchmark, to ensure their Indiana client base has access to the best medical care no matter where they’re located in the state, and to ensure the entire ecosystem of clients, support staff and clients’ families are protected from exposure to COVID-19.
According to a recent study, individuals with IDD are 3x more likely to die if they have COVID-19, so teaming up with StationMD isn’t a matter of convenience, it’s literally a life-saving measure.
StationMD is unique because all doctors at this practice are specially trained to manage care for people with IDD. And with ~90% of StationMD’s virtual consultations, the doctor can address an individual’s medical concern without them ever leaving the comfort and safety of home. Whether it’s an urgent medical matter like fever and vomiting, a seizure, a rash or a fall, or it’s just someone who has a medical question or needs a prescription refilled, StationMD is a best-standard, first-line of care for these types of matters, especially during the pandemic.
By keeping people out of the ER when they don’t need to be there, it not only offers huge savings to patients, Benchmark and to state and private insurers, but it relieves pressure on hospitals that are stretched thin treating both regular emergencies and COVID patients.
Karen Shollenberger, Vice President, Benchmark Human Services, says, “The COVID epidemic has changed how we access medical services both currently and in the future. We are thrilled to be the first provider of disability services in Indiana to team up with StationMD to offer telehealth. It is an excellent supplement to in-person healthcare and will allow physician-level services for situations that do not require emergency or office visits. It also will provide access to health services for individuals we serve who struggle to tolerate office visits.”
Dr. Maulik Trivedi, MD, Chief Strategy Officer at StationMD says, “One of the best ways we can help vulnerable populations avoid exposure to COVID-19, and at the same time relieve pressure on resource-strapped emergency departments is to use telemedicine when possible. Going to the doctor or emergency room can be disorienting and traumatizing to someone with special needs. As an emergency room physician with over 20 years in practice, I have witnessed people with disabilities and their families endure stressful ER visits, unnecessary costly tests and hospital admissions all because the health system doesn’t flex to meet their needs. With Benchmark bringing the physician upstream to the patient, we are truly delivering more patient-centric medical care.”
The partnership between Benchmark and StationMD will serve ~1,000 individuals across Indiana through February 2022. All Benchmark staff will receive training for when and how to use StationMD’s simple telemedicine service, so they can access a doctor immediately when patients need it most.