The Waco Department of Veterans Affairs is rolling out a new program to allow veterans to video conference with nurses.
The VA Video Connect system is the first VA facility to have the system for triage concerns -- like a lump, bump or bite.
Any Central Texas veteran can use the system if they have video capabilities with a smartphone, tablet or computer.
The nurses need to have ample triage experience to be a part of the team, according to the nurse manager.
"They've done triage before. They went through extensive training here, and of course, we had to develop our own policies and procedures -- how we're going to proceed with this. So, it helps if a nurse comes from ICU, emergency room or from the pack teams that does a lot of triage," Willie Patterson, Nurse Manager of the Triage Call Center said.
Veterans Affairs representatives are encouraging veterans to download the "Pexip" app to enable the virtual medical room.
Here's how it works: veterans can call 1-800-423-2111 and press '5'. The nurse will email the veteran a link and then they can get into the virtual room where they can see and chat with a nurse about their concern.
"Then we make our decision based on that, what we want to do with that patient," Patterson said. "Do you need to go to the emergency room? Do you need to get an appointment to see your private physician? And what time frame we're going to do that in."