U.S. Senator Pete Domenici has secured a $750,000 grant to support the UNM Health Sciences Center Telehealth Outreach for Unified Community Health (TOUCH). Funding for this program was appropriated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The program is a joint effort by the UNM Health Sciences Center and the John A. Burns School of Medicine in Hawaii.

The goals of TOUCH are to improve the quality of healthcare services and education in remote, multicultural areas in Hawaii and New Mexico through modern telehealth technologies. TOUCH uses advanced information systems and high performing computing to enhance education, training, patient care management and problem solving in collaboration with students and health care providers.

Students, tutors and preceptors of both medical schools, with support from Sandia National Laboratories, use virtual reality models, enhanced 3D images and computer simulation to enhance the problembased learning curricula currently being used in their medical education programs.

The Health Resources and Services Administration's Office for the Advancement of Telehealth released the $750,000 grant to UNM, which will extend through July 31, 2002.

Contact: HSC Public Affairs, 272-3322