As telehealth expands, local siblings collect devices for seniors

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increase in the use of telehealth where patients are able to virtually meet with their patients.

While it may be convenient for some, it’s not possible for others as it requires access to a smartphone or device.

“The problem is a lot of elderly or low-income patients don’t have smart iPads or iPhones. A lot of them still have flip phones, which means they can’t get their video appointments done,” said Hannah Verma.

She and her brother Arjun Verma started "Telehealth Access for Seniors."

"So what we’re trying to do is crowd source old used devices to give to these patients, so that way they can access care and not get sick,” said Verma.

With the help of 50 volunteers nationwide, they’ve collected 150 devices. The volunteers do outreach in their own communities. 

“If you have a device, you put where you’re located, like what region, and we have a volunteer in your region reach out to you, and people can either mail it in or we can do a socially distanced pick up,” she explained.

The devices are then given to medical offices that in turn give them to patients in need.

“We give them to practices or veterans hospitals that have already identified patients in need. So once we give it to the practice, you know it's going to go to the patients who definitely need it,” said Verma.

The siblings said the demand is high.

“Doctors from around the country have actually emailed us saying they would love to get devices for their patients,” she explained.

They are hoping more donations pour in so those in need can stay connected and healthy.

Click here to learn more about the project.