Christina DeSimone, president and founder of Future Care, Inc., a leading maritime tele-medical service provider, spoke at the Connecticut Maritime Association (CMA) 2016 Shipping Convention about the link between seafarers’ health and shipping efficiency.
“While there has been a global effort by vessel-operating companies to improve emergency medical treatment at sea though increased use of telemedicine, much less time is being spent on the seafarers’ healthcare while living and working onboard a ship,” DeSimone said.
“Currently, the extent of the employer’s primary care treatment begins and ends with the Pre-Employment Examination.”
DeSimone said that the Pre-Employment Examination (PEME) often helps identify chronic illnesses such as hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular and gastrointestinal problems before the mariner goes onboard. But then nothing more is done, and seafarers can spend many months at sea without further medical support. These untreated conditions can lead to potentially expensive shoreside medical visits, unscheduled repatriations, ship deviations or emergency evacuations.
Future Care’s Physician Advice at Sea program and telemedicine services result in over twenty-five percent of all consultations ending with the captain and crew member agreeing to a return-to-duty outcome. The ability to diagnose and treat the seafarer while on board not only saves time and money but leads to improved mental and physical wellbeing for the individual seafarer.
DeSimone told the audience of shipping executives that routine onboard medical screenings will greatly reduce costs and promote seafarer health, leading to more positive outcomes and improved ship-operating efficiency. With continued advances in communications and medical technology, telemedicine and seafarer health programs have become increasingly effective and inexpensive.
To learn more about telemedicine and Future Care’s Physician Advice at Sea program, please call (212) 207-3590 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also visit the website at www.futurecareinc.com.
The products and services herein described in this press release are not endorsed by The Maritime Executive.