Three-hundred and thirty staffers at Mercy's Virtual Care Center place video calls to patients using highly sensitive two-way cameras to monitor their vital signs in real time, according to an article on the CNN Money website.
Monitoring tools like pulse oximeters plug into the patients' iPads.
The Virtual Care Center, launched in October 2015 is a $54 million, four-story "hospital without beds" with a variety of "telemedicine" programs that allow Mercy to care for patients remotely round-the-clock.
Not everyone believes virtual-care technology has a place in healthcare. Critics of telemedicine are concerned about "continuity of care," saying that patients may receive care from different navigators each time they call, and primary care doctors may be looped out of important health discussions.