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Kyrgyzstan delegation

Improving quality and access around the world

Gundersen Health System is bringing its telemedicine expertise to an international stage.

David Guggenbuehl, RN, MBA, Gundersen Regional Services

David Guggenbuehl, RN, MBA, Gundersen Regional Services)

A five-person delegation from Kyrgyzstan visited Gundersen and other La Crosse area organizations in March as part of a trip coordinated by the Open World program, a U.S. Congress-funded initiative that introduces citizens of emerging countries to the importance of democratic and legislative functions.

Michael Pace, MD, a retired physician from Gundersen Sparta Clinic, and Dave Guggenbuehl, RN, MBA, director of Gundersen Regional Services, coordinated telemedicine education for one member of the delegation, Arianna Akmatova, who works for the Central Asian Research and Education Network.

"Arianna is part of a group developing a much-needed telemedicine network in Kyrgyzstan," Dave says. "Technology and broadband capacity are limited, the country's capital (Bishkek) is in the north, and its rural populations are in the south, with mountains separating the two. In addition to geographical challenges, the country's rural physicians are already very busy."

"We hope our best practices – enhancing access to patients with limited access to quality care, building relationships and improving communication – can significantly impact healthcare delivery in Kyrgyzstan and help this group improve the overall quality of care through telemedicine."

Learn more about Gundersen telemedicine services or email Dave at dlguggen@gundersenhealth.org.

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