Kootenai | Kootenai Health | Issue 3, 2022

16 By Elizabeth Brewer, M.Ed. Kootenai Health is proud to have been a member of the Mayo Clinic Care Network since 2014. This connection has given Kootenai Health access to different and valuable Mayo Clinic resources. In the past eight years, through the Mayo Clinic Care Network eConsult program, hundreds of patients have been able to work with specialists who may not be available locally. Kootenai Health and Mayo Clinic team up to find answers to puzzling heart troubles An eConsult is a way for physicians and their patients in our community to tap into the knowledge and expertise of Mayo Clinic physicians and specialists. Cliff Hampton, M.D., Kootenai Health neurologist, said it’s been beneficial to send imaging studies to Mayo Clinic for a second look through the eConsult process. “I appreciate being able to run a case by the Mayo subspecialists to support my diagnosis and treatment,” he said. “This is particularly important when there is a case that could use input from a subspecialty that we don’t have available in our region.” Subspecialty is sometimes used to describe increasingly more diverse medical specialties. For example, cardiology is a specialty that deals with the heart. A pediatric cardiologist is a subspecialist who cares for children with heart issues. Agoldenopportunity One of Dr. Hampton’s patients, Kristina Breneman, recently benefited from the input of Mayo Clinic subspecialists. Kristina is a wife, mother and northern Idaho resident who has a complex medical history—in the past few years, she has had several major surgeries and faced a wide range of debilitating symptoms. She thought she’d been improving after her last surgery, only to be blindsided by a new set of symptoms. Kristina worked with Dr. Hampton and a Kootenai Heart Clinic cardiologist to find an answer. After some monitoring and evaluation, Dr. Hampton sought an eConsult with the Mayo Clinic. “Dr. Hampton is such a great listener and communicator,” Kristina said. “I really appreciated that he was working with the Mayo Clinic to help treat me.” Most of the time, a Mayo consultant can answer questions during a session and save the patient a trip across the country to one of their locations. Occasionally, they will ask to see the patient in