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Health Science Center to provide inmate care (2/24/97)

The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio recently signed an agreement with Medical Development, International of Vienna, Va., to provide health care for the l,400 inmates housed at the Three Rivers Federal Correctional Institute, situated midway between Corpus Christi and San Antonio.

Although primary care for the prisoners will continue to be provided by their own physicians, UTHSC's $7 million, five- year contract calls for specialty care to be provided by university physicians.

Eventually consultations and follow-up examinations will be done by telecommunications technology, according to Suzanne Rogers, contract spokesperson.

"The hospital contract is still pending but we are already booking appointments with physicians," Rogers said.

High-speed fiber optics, portable interactive telecommunications units can connect two locations hundreds of miles apart. A physician at UTHSC can be in his office in San Antonio and diagnose or consult during the exam of a patient located at Three Rivers. It has been projected that the telecommunications units will be in place and active within three months.

Contact: Jan Elkins (210) 567-2570