Directors & Faculty

photo of Matthew Lyon, MD

Matthew Lyon, MD

  • Director, Center for Telehealth

Matt Lyon, MD, is the J. Harold Harrison, MD, Distinguished University Chair in Emergency Medicine and Professor of Emergency Medicine. He serves as Associate Dean for Experiential Learning and Executive Director of the Center for Ultrasound Education for the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University. He also serves as Vice Chairman for Academic Programs and Research for the Department of Emergency Medicine and as the Virtual Care Service Chief at AU Health. Dr. Lyon is a graduate of Georgia Institute of Technology (Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering) and of the Medical College of Georgia (MD, 1999). He completed his residency in Emergency Medicine at the Medical College of Georgia in 2003.

Dr. Lyon is a well-established clinician, educator and researcher. He has a national reputation as an educator on the clinician use of ultrasound and is a frequent national and international speaker. Much of his research has focused on clinical applications of ultrasound and sickle cell anemia. He has pioneered several new applications for ultrasound, including use of ultrasound for volume resuscitation in critically ill patients, use of ultrasound for respiratory complaints and for traumatic brain injury assessment. His brain injury assessment using ultrasound is experimentally and clinically oriented, receiving federal grant funding and yielding several patents. He has extensive collaborations with industry to bring new devices to the market for brain injury assessment and is currently working with Space X on novel diagnostic tools for Space Flight Associated Neuro-ocular Syndrome.

Continuing on work that began in the early 2000’s, Dr. Lyon was charged with creating an integrated ultrasound education training program for undergraduate and graduate medical education for the Medical College of Georgia. In October 2016, he was named the Executive Director of the Center for Ultrasound Education. The mission of this Center is to utilize ultrasound as an educational tool, providing a cognitive scaffolding to improve medical education. His curriculum is fully integrated into the 4-year curriculum for all 920 medical students at MCG, as well as approximately 350 postgraduate medical residents from a wide range of specialties at Augusta University Medical Center. The Center provides education to residency programs across Georgia, supporting the Center’s mission. His efforts have produced a novel, nation-leading educational experience for MCG learners across the state. Dr. Lyon also conducts a nationally accredited, post-graduate fellowship training program for clinician performed ultrasound (Advanced Emergency Ultrasound Fellowship) with up to 3 fellows per year.

Beginning in 2018 with funding through a USDA telemedicine grant, Dr. Lyon began a telemedicine program between AU Health and 5 rural Georgia emergency departments, the Tele-ED program. This program aids rural emergency physicians in decreasing transfers to larger cities for time sensitive treatments. The telemedicine system includes the remote use of ultrasound for diagnosing a wide range of emergency conditions and aiding in the rural clinician in the performance of high-risk, low-volume procedures. During the COVID-19 crisis in 2020, Dr. Lyon helped initiate a telemedicine screening program that screened over 20,000 citizens in Georgia and South Carolina for appropriate COVID testing. Since that time, he has helped AU Health expand its telemedicine ecosystem to ambulatory and specialty services and created a medical student telehealth clinic to decrease hospital readmission of patients with chronic medical conditions. The Tele-ED program has been expanded to include inpatient care (Tele-Critical Care) and now includes 16 rural hospitals across Georgia, supporting rural hospital viability and patient centered care. With the importance of telehealth demonstrated by the COVID pandemic, telehealth education will be critical for future doctors. Dr. Lyon has the responsibility of incorporating telehealth into the Medical College of Georgia educational curriculum.

photo of Lauren Hopkins, MPH

Lauren Hopkins, MPH

  • Associate Director for Operations
Lauren Hopkins, MPH is the Associate Director for Operations at the MCG Center for Telehealth.

Lauren Williams Hopkins, MPH, has been with AU Health, in Augusta, Georgia since April 2016. Mrs. Hopkins is tasked with leading all value-based initiatives for the provider practice plan, which is composed of over 1600 faculty members and residents. Lauren is responsible for the operational performance of shared savings arrangements and incentive programs, chronic care management, transitional care management, the Quality Payment Program, oversight of post-acute care development, Bundled Payment for Care Improvement-Advanced, and Patient-Centered Medical Home accreditation.

Mrs. Hopkins was tasked with the growth and oversight of the organization’s telehealth and virtual care program in 2018. This included development of a rural Tele-Emergency Department and Critical Care program, direct to consumer platform, and partnerships for outreach clinics. Mrs. Hopkins is has also partnered with the Medical College of Georgia, Georgia’s state medical school, to develop telehealth curriculum for medical students and residents.

She received her undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences and graduate degree in Masters of Public Health with an emphasis in Health Administration from the University of Southern Mississippi, in Hattiesburg. Lauren came to AU Health from Pioneer Health Services, where she served in a variety of roles from Administrator and Associate Administrator for five plus years. In 2014, Lauren began working for the company’s value-based department, Rural Solutions, as Director of Network Development and Strategic Alignment for their Medicare Shared Savings Accountable Care Organization. In this role, she was responsible for developing and managing partnerships with existing and new partners in the ACO, managing and disseminating all reporting for the financial performance of the ACO, and helped align the strategic vision of improving rural health care in the southeastern United States.

She currently resides in Waynesboro, Georgia, with her husband and fur babies, Brutus and Boomer. Lauren has a passion for healthcare policy and rural healthcare. In her spare time, she enjoys running, reading, cheering on her Southern Miss Golden Eagles and Georgia Southern Eagles. Lauren also serves as the Chapter Advisor for Kappa Delta Sorority at Georgia Southern University.


  • Business Manager