"The Emergence of Telephone Advice: Accessing Health Care Information"

The first national nursing conference in Canada on Telephone Advice, "The Emergence of Telephone Advice: Accessing Health Care Information" organized by the Alberta Children's Hospital Emergency Department & Foundation was held at the Palliser Hotel in Calgary, Alberta, October 13-14th, 2000.  If you missed it, you missed a great opportunity to hear the latest developments in telephone and eHealth nursing, network with over 250 colleagues, view useful vendor displays, and share eHealth stories and ideas with healthcare pioneers from Canada and others from around the globe.

For those of you who have never been to Calgary, its a lot more than the "Calgary Stampede."  Did you know that the  Calgary tower reaches 191 meters (626 feet) up into the sky?  It's a wonderful place to have dinner with new friends and colleagues and check out the city views at night. Or, take an escalator up to the second level of almost any downtown store and you are connected to several blocks of inside shopping.  But, who has time for shopping when the conference turns out to be so informative.

We keep hearing that there is a consumer healthcare revolution out there along with a technological transformation. Consumers want immediate healthcare information.  It's about time the healthcare industry heard the call and stepped on board!  As David Seuss, CEO of Northern Light, recently stated, "The end user just wants to sit down, express their needs for information, and have it appear instantaneously and magically from all over the world, right there on the screen."  The technological capability is here, all we need is healthcare buy-in.  Finally, healthcare buy-in is coming, and telephone and eHealth nurses are leading the way!  This conference confirms that story.

Really neat people!

It's important to know how and why we've evolved into telephone nurses and learn the differences in the different Provinces as well as from around the globe. It's also important to learn from others what has worked and what hasn't and to share our knowledge rather than to reinvent the wheel thousands of times over. 

Our energies should focus on the future, not the past.   We need to learn of the legal implications of providing telephone advice across not only the Provinces but around the world and learn about the emerging trends of today and apply them to tomorrow's possibilities.  This conference addressed these and other issues and offered great insight into the future of telehealth.

 Lots of great ideas!

Great ideas come from thoughtful exchange of information via conversations, networking, viewing vendor displays, talking with industry leaders, and most importantly, acting on those exchanges.

 I believe that this conference inspired those of us that attended to be more actively involved in promoting and growing eHealth nursing. For those of you that didn't attend, let's hope that this or another group will do it again soon!

~ The Beginning ~