BRTA Briefings

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Training Opportunities

BRTA provides training opportunities to their member organizations through TelehealthVillage and STAR Telehealth. For more information, click on the logos below.

TelehealthVillage is a collaboration between the University of Virginia (UVA) Karen S. Rheuban Center for Telehealth, the Mid-Atlantic Telehealth Resource Center and the University of Virginia (UVA) Office of Continuing Medical Education. The vision of TelehealthVillage is to become the trusted, go to learning resource for telehealth fundamentals, technology, practice, policy, business development, and innovation and specialty applications.

The Southside Telehealth Training Academy and Resource Center (STAR) is a premier training program for health care providers seeking to use advanced telemedicine and telehealth systems to improve access to quality healthcare for rural and medically-underserved populations. New College Institute’s STAR Telehealth program provides an opportunity for continuing education, career advancement, and professional development to equip tomorrow’s telehealth professionals to meet the rapidly growing demand for telehealth education.  Telehealth encompasses a variety of technologies to deliver and enhance virtual medical, health, and education services.

Telehealth Resources

American Telemedicine Association

As the only organization completely focused on advancing telehealth, ATA is working to change the way the world thinks about healthcare. We are committed to ensuring that everyone has access to safe, effective, and appropriate care when and where they need it, and that providers can do more good for more people. We represent a broad and inclusive member network of technology solution providers, healthcare delivery systems, and payers, as well as partner organizations and alliances. Together, we are working to advance industry adoption of telehealth, promote responsible policy, advocate for government and market normalization, and provide education and resources to help integrate virtual care into emerging value-based delivery models.

The Virginia Rural Health Association (VRHA) is a nonprofit organization working for the 2.5 million people who call rural Virginia their home. Our mission is to improve the health of rural Virginians through education, advocacy, and fostering cooperative partnerships.

The Virginia Telehealth Network (VTN) is a 501c3 nonprofit membership organization dedicated to supporting telehealth efforts in the Commonwealth. Started in 2006 by a group of health professionals with an interest in promoting telehealth, VTN seeks to provide education, resources, and best practices to telehealth stakeholders while advocating for safe and effective delivery of telehealth services. We seek to develop and maintain strong partnerships that allow for the exploration and promotion of innovative programs that promote access to high-quality health care.

Now Available: Turn to Telehealth Partner Toolkit
A new partner toolkit on helps organizations communicate with their audiences about telehealth. The toolkit includes downloadable sample newsletter articles, social media content, tip sheets, graphics, and web badges that connect patients and providers to the most current information about telehealth and its benefits.

Telehealth Optimization Quick Guide for Health Centers
This updated resource guide from NACHC is intended to support health centers that want to advance telehealth or virtual services during the COVID-19 pandemic response and operational recovery.

More about BRTA

Bay Rivers Telehealth Alliance (BRTA) is a non-profit telehealth network based in Tappahannock, VA serving residents east of Richmond and Fredericksburg, VA in rural Eastern Virginia including the Northern Neck, Middle Peninsula, and Eastern Shore. BRTA’s vision is for telehealth to contribute to better health and well-being for populations in medically underserved communities served by BRTA Members.

We aim to serve communities by developing telehealth projects that improve access to health services; engage patients as partners; reduce professional isolation among health service providers; and provide access to training and development of the health care workforce.  Over its 17-year history, BRTA has been successful in expanding access to medical care for rural populations via telehealth technologies-from remote, live interactive videoconferencing consults by urban-based specialists to reach rural patients and provider facilities.

BRTA has been awarded repeated grant funding by the US Health Resources and Services Administration Office for the Advancement of Telehealth, as a part of the Telehealth Network Grant Program(TNGP) which provides geriatric behavioral telehealth services throughout a rural network of healthcare sites and long-term care facilities in Southeastern Virginia through 2016. Another grant was awarded in September 2016, for a five-year school-based initiative to introduce telehealth into three rural school systems.

In April, 2015 and 2018 the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy awarded BRTA a 3 year grant to implement Remote Home Monitoring and Chronic Disease Self-Management in partnership with the award winning Eastern Virginia Care Transitions Partnership, recognized by the Virginia Center for Health Innovation and the U.S. Center for Medicare Services which provides post-discharge coaching to reduce hospital readmissions. In 2018 and 2020, BRTA received grants to coordinate Regional Opioid Response using Telehealth-Enabled Innovations.

In 2018, HRSA named BRTA a Rural Health Community Champion for our work on Evidence-Based, Promising Practices Model, which is listed in the Rural Health Information Hub for Chronic Disease Management and the COPD Tool-Kit. In 2020, BRTA received a grant to establish the Eastern Shore Telehealth Consortium, and pilot telehealth-enabled Medication Assisted Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder with the Eastern Shore Regional Jail, and healthcare providers on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

Bay Rivers Telehealth Alliance is a membership organization including Riverside Health System, Virginia Commonwealth University, Bay Aging, Middle Peninsula/Northern Neck Community Services Board, Rappahannock Community College, Bay Workforce Investment Board, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Eastern Shore Community Services Board, Eastern Shore Rural Health Services, Central Virginia Health Services, Virginia Department of Health (Three Rivers and Eastern Shore Districts) and the Ledwith-Lewis Free Clinic.

Rural Health Voice Podcast

How can technology improve healthcare access?  Donna Dittman Hale, Executive Director of Bay Rivers Telehealth Alliance, joined The Rural Health Voice to discuss plugging into telehealth.

Ms. Hale was one of the speakers at the 2020 Rural Health Voice conference.  To view the video presentation that led to this interview, visit the Rural Health Voice conference and register for the event.  You can choose to just watch just one, or all five of our excellent speakers.

New Consortium Funded

Bay Rivers Telehealth Alliance wins $900,000 in Federal funds to establish Eastern Shore Telehealth Consortium

Telehealth Network to Bring Additional Telehealth Services to Virginia’s Eastern Shore

Tappahannock, Virginia: Bay Rivers Telehealth Alliance (BRTA) has been awarded federal grant funds of $900,000 over 3 years for its development of the Eastern Shore Telehealth Consortium (ESTC).  This grant establishes a sustainable consortium designed to build a telehealth delivery system infrastructure to promote increased resources, innovation, and coordination of health services on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. 

The initial project for ESTC is to help coordinate services for individuals living on the Eastern Shore, with mental health and substance use disorders(SUD) and/or opioid use disorder(OUD) by linking treatment resources through telehealth.  Over the next three years, ESTC will work with community partners to increase the use of evidenced-based and culturally appropriate OUD/SUD interventions through telehealth-enabled innovations. 

The federal funding comes from the U.S. Department for Health and Human Services Rural Health Network Development Program which exists to increase access to healthcare in rural areas through the expansion of telehealth technology. 

BRTA and ESTC will partner with Riverside Shore Memorial Hospital, Eastern Shore Community Services Board, Eastern Shore Regional Jail, Eastern Virginia Medical School and the Virginia Department of Health to create the Consortium.  If any agency is interested in learning more about the Consortium and partnering opportunities, please contact Donna Dittman Hale.

BRTA’s executive director, Donna Dittman Hale, said “We are excited to support the organizations on Virginia’s Eastern Shore to enhance the system of care with technology, telecommunications and integrated systems of care.” BRTA hired Mary Ochsner to lead the ESTC. As former director of the Senior Perspectives program at RSMH, she has proven ability to pull together community service providers to support the health of community residents.

The mission of the Eastern Shore Telehealth Consortium is to increase access to healthcare for all people on the Eastern Shore by offering a telemedicine delivery model and supporting virtual health projects. The vision is for telehealth to contribute to  better health and well-being for all populations in Virginia’s Eastern Shore Communities.

Bay Rivers Telehealth Alliance is a mature telehealth network whose vision is for virtual health strategies to contribute to better health and well-being for populations in Virginia communities. BRTA will serve as a mentor and fiscal agent to foster the growth and success of the Eastern Shore Telehealth Consortium.

Vision & Mission

Vision:  BRTA’s vision is for virtual health strategies to contribute to better health and well-being for populations in Virginia communities.

Mission:  BRTA’s mission is to help its Members serve communities by supporting virtual health projects that improve health and health care.

Value Model: BRTA will deliver value by helping our Members and partners serve their communities through: a) virtual health strategies that improve access to services, consumer experience, clinical impact, operational effectiveness, and financial viability; and b) health professions education and workforce development initiatives. 

Core Principles: BRTA’s core principles guide our strategic decisions about projects and partnerships. We value project opportunities that are:



Scalable, and


Health-E Learners Program

Serving Northumberland and Westmoreland Counties

Bay Rivers Telehealth Alliance has started a major undertaking to bring School-Based Telehealth Centers to the Northern Neck of Virginia.  This is done through an extensive partnership with Riverside Health System, Middle Peninsula Northern Neck Community Services Board, Virginia Department of Health Office of Health Equity, Northumberland County Public Schools, Westmoreland County Public Schools, Rappahannock Community College, the Center for Rural Health Innovation, and Community Health Solutions.