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NC Division of Medical Assistance - High quality health care through Medicaid and Health Choice for Children.

About Virtual Meetings

At times, it makes sense to hold "virtual meetings" rather than traditional face-to-face meetings. These alternative-meeting formats can often save money, time, and produce the same results as a traditional meeting.

Two useful alternatives to traditional meetings are:

Conference Calls

ITS can set up three kinds of conference calls:

  • Meet-Me-Conference Calls
  • Toll-Free User Managed Audio Conference service
  • Attendant Controlled Conferencing service

Information about these types of calls, and the necessary forms are on the ITS website.

Tips for Effective Conference Calls:

  • Make sure that the speakers identify themselves as they speak, so everyone knows who is talking.
  • It is probably a good idea to have a "moderator" for the call. This should be someone that the group agrees on to help keep everyone on the topic and make sure all callers get a chance to contribute.
  • Experienced conference callers think that numbers up to 10 may be manageable, but over that, it could get too confusing to manage.

Video Conferencing

Video Conferencing saves travel expenses.

Another advantage to video conferencing: everyone hears the same information at the same time from one source.

For effective videoconferencing, know your purpose! Video conferencing is probably not as effective for consensus building and/or negotiation. It can be excellent for information sharing and information-based (rather than skill building) training and education.

There are two methods for DHHS employees to access video conferencing:

Public Health Training and Information Network

Our Public Health Division maintains a two-way videoconferencing system with large sites in seven locations from Elizabeth City to Sylva., and access to smaller sites in up to 40 local health departments. Other divisions may use the sites but time slots are limited since Public Health has first priority on scheduling. If you can find a time slot and facility available, there is no up-front charge for using the system. However, since Public Health allocates costs back to their offices on a pro-rated basis for yearly percentage of usage, other DHHS divisions are expected to contribute in the same way.

Contact Joy Reed to check on availability and other details. They have an excellent "Public Health Training and Information Network (PHTIN)" web site with more information. You may go to the "class schedule " section before contacting Joy to see if the dates you need are already booked.

(Raleigh and Chapel Hill sites are best for faculty and training presentations since they can accommodate instructional aids such as Power Point and overheads.)

Statewide Video Conferencing Network: North Carolina Information Highway (NCIH)

For a fee, you can schedule video conferencing through the NCIH network. The cost varies by location and generally ranges from $25.00 to $100.00 per hour.

A number of sites are located in our own department, including Governor Morehead School in Raleigh, the Eastern North Carolina School for the Deaf in Wilson, and a number of health departments. They are also at many community colleges throughout the state.

For more information visit the NCIH web site
and Using the North Carolina Information Highway for State Agency Business.
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