Dr. Ronald Weinstein, Telepathology Pioneer, dies at age 83

He completed his medical education at Tufts University in 1965 and ended his stay at Massachusetts General Hospital, which at the time was experimenting with an early telemedicine program connecting it with a television camera to a clinic at Logan Airport in Boston. He was asked to look at a few cases, and he said, “it stuck in my mind.”

In 1975, he became chairman of the pathology department at the Rush Presbyterian in Chicago, and 11 years later he was ready to introduce the idea of ​​telepathology, founding Corabi Telemetrics, one of several companies he created or helped create to bring ideas developed in the academic world to market.

“Sears and Roebuck never intended to get into the financial business,” he said in a speech a few weeks before the demonstration of his new technology in 1986, referring to the retail giant’s expansion into banking at the time. “But somewhere along the line, engineers figured out how to place satellites in space and revolutionized the financial industry. And what I want to talk about today is how the same changes are going to revolutionize the way we practice medicine. on.”

Dr. Weinstein took his expertise to the University of Arizona in 1990, where he became head of the pathology department at the College of Medicine. By the mid-1990s, telemedicine was well established, at least as a concept, and Bob Burns, a member of the Arizona House of Representatives who later became state senator, had a computer programming background and was interested in it, securing funding for a nationwide initiative. .

When the state asked the university to oversee the project, “they gave us the best man they had,” Mr. Burns in a phone interview. It was Dr. Weinstein, who was appointed director when the program began in 1996.

The project, said Mr. Burns, made a special effort to bring medical expertise to remote areas, Indian reservations and prisons – and even abroad to places like Panama.

Elizabeth A. Krupinski, a longtime colleague and collaborator now at Emory University, said Dr. Weinstein had both vision and human skills.

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