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Blue Cross NC funds ECU telehealth program at Elizabeth City State University

East Carolina University will be providing telepsychiatry services to students at Elizabeth City State University, because of funding from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina. PRE’s Meredith Radford has more.

ECU is leading a statewide program to connect patients in hospital emergency departments and community-based settings with psychiatric care through telehealth.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina awarded ECU over $1.5 million to provide services over the next five years to students at Elizabeth City State University.

According to a news release, telepsychiatry helps address the shortages of providers of patients who may not otherwise have access to services, such as those in North Carolina’s rural communities like Pasquotank County, where ECSU is located.

The partnership will expand behavioral health care at ECSU at a time when mental health concerns on college campuses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic are surging.

For Public Radio East, I’m Meredith Radford.

ECU and BCBS are financial supporters of PRE.

Meredith Radford is a News Reporter for Public Radio East. She studied at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, receiving a degree in Journalism and Political Science. Born and raised in Eastern North Carolina, Meredith is excited to cover the area and contribute to the community. When not out reporting, she enjoys hiking, camping and kayaking as well as baking.