San Diego, Verizon roll out 5G network to support virtual health

San Diego launched Verizon's new 5G wireless network in certain parts of the city May 28 to help healthcare providers conduct telehealth care more efficiently.

The network, which offers little transmission delay and download speeds 10 times faster than a standard network, comes as network capacities in hospitals nationwide are being tested by the dramatic increase in telehealth appointments.

In San Diego, Sharp Healthcare has experienced a 4,000 percent increase in telehealth appointments during the pandemic, and Kaiser Permanente now conducts 80 percent of appointments virtually. Rady Children's Hospital went from an average of 20 telehealth visits a week before the pandemic to a current weekly average of 4,000.

"In order to meet the healthcare needs of San Diego's children, we've seen more than a 100-fold increase in the number of video visits conducted weekly since February. Fast and reliable internet is no longer a luxury; it's a necessity to allow a greater level of service to children in our community," Anthony Magit, MD, a physician at Rady Children's Hospital, said in a news release.

More articles on telehealth:
FCC awards $68M in telehealth funding to 53 providers
CMS expands telehealth for Medicare Advantage plans: 4 details
Highmark extends breaks for telehealth through Sept. 30: 4 details

San Diego launched Verizon's new 5G wireless network in certain parts of the city May 28 to help healthcare providers conduct telehealth care more efficiently.

The network, which offers little transmission delay and download speeds 10 times faster than a standard network, comes as network capacities in hospitals nationwide are being tested by the dramatic increase in telehealth appointments.

In San Diego, Sharp Healthcare has experienced a 4,000 percent increase in telehealth appointments during the pandemic, and Kaiser Permanente now conducts 80 percent of appointments virtually. Rady Children's Hospital went from an average of 20 telehealth visits a week before the pandemic to a current weekly average of 4,000.

"In order to meet the healthcare needs of San Diego's children, we've seen more than a 100-fold increase in the number of video visits conducted weekly since February. Fast and reliable internet is no longer a luxury; it's a necessity to allow a greater level of service to children in our community," Anthony Magit, MD, a physician at Rady Children's Hospital, said in a news release.

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