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Vermont Doctor Tele-Consults Boosted by New Regs

A girl, from Minamisoma in Fukushima, undergoes a screening test for signs of nuclear radiation by a doctor at a health center in Yonezawa

New health insurance regulations in Vermont are giving a boost to telemedicine, the system that enables health care providers to offer consult with patients without being in the same room.

Sometimes residents at the Helen Porter Health Care and Rehabilitation Center in Middlebury are able to see a physician at Fletcher Allen Health Care through a two-way video hookup.

Porter nurse Leslie Orelup says the system works well.

Telemedicine isn't new, but the new regulations will make it easier for physicians to be reimbursed for services performed by two-way video hookups.

Now there are 70 health care locations in Vermont and a dozen in New York's North Country that are connected with Fletcher Allen.

Fletcher Allen Telemedicine director Dr. Terry Rabinowitz says popular specialties for the consultations are psychiatry and dermatology.

Copyright 2012 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.