The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Utilizing the webinar

Rachael Westergard
The University of Iowa Health Care building is seen on Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2015.

By Tom Ackerman
[email protected]

Local hospitals make strides in providing greater healthcare in conjunction with technology’s use on the rise. A ‘webinar’ was held for the public at 1:30 p.m. Thursday for free.

The service is in place of a traditional seminar, covering weight loss surgery, or bariatric operations. It will also educate viewers on proper nutrition and diet.

“Time will tell whether this turns into operations and revenue,” said Peter Nau, a presenter and assistant professor of surgery at UIHC. “If it doesn’t, I think it’s a good way to teach people about what we do and raise awareness of the services we have at the UI.”

The event is titled “Lose the Weight. Find Your Life.”

Registration numbers reached 16 Thursday afternoon, with 20-25 total people expected, said Aubry Kunze, coordinator of community relations at the hospital.

This will be UIHC’s second webinar, said Kunze. The first was towards the end of July, she said.

Two additional web seminars are upcoming for the fall, including lectures on low back pain and orthopedics.

“[It’s] a good example of our ongoing efforts to reach out to patients wherever they are and communicate with them about the cutting edge treatments…that may not just change their lives, but enhance their quality of life as well,” said UIHC spokesperson Tom Moore over e-mail.

The increased technology use has proven beneficial as a means of convenience for patients across the state.

“There’s a lot of new stuff we’re learning and lots of stuff we need to teach patients about. Getting them this information accessibly can really only improve their options and their healthcare overall,” Nau said.

The webinar consisted of a presentation with Nau and a professor of surgery Isaac Samuel, as well as advanced registered nurse practitioner Dana Jones, who will discuss lifestyle choices.

“I think it’s about making the healthcare we deliver more informative and more convenient. Bariatric surgery is very much consumer driven and I think there’s a lot of misconceptions with bariatric surgery,” Nau said, hoping that the program will raise awareness.

While the option can be a more convenient means than driving into Iowa City, Kunze said numbers are deceivingly low.

“The number of individuals registered hasn’t been as high as our in-person seminars,” Kunze said. However, UIHC tracks the number of views, which accounts higher than the amount of total registered users.

Presenters hope to see viewer numbers rise as more webinars are put in place.

“We have some pretty good ways to track how people do it,” Kunze said. Links can be sent by users rather than registering through the UI, Kunze said.

Accessibility for patients far from the hospital was a focus for the presenters.

“It’s a great thing for us to be able to get information more accessible to our patients rather than have them get in the car for two or three hours both ways,” Nau said.

Following the main event on video was a question and answer segment. This is where the audience has the opportunity to interact with the physicians, Kunze said.

Viewers typed in their questions, which were then addressed by the presenters on the video stream.

For now, UIHC will toy with the notion of technology and how the greater Iowa community may be better connected.

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