The internet has made service delivery across many sectors easy. One of the industries that have hugely benefited from digital technologies is the health care sector. Telehealth has minimized the need to visit your doctor instead, making it easier to get medical assistance from your home’s convenience. Whether you need a quick diagnosis or help decide which medication to purchase, you can easily communicate with your health care provider instead of scheduling an appointment that might take days to secure. Virtual medical visits come with a lot of benefits, making telehealth even more popular across various specialties. Here are some of the advantages of telemedicine.
Improved patient-doctor engagement
Before telemedicine, patients would have to meet their primary care physician for check-ups physically—tasking, especially for those suffering from chronic conditions such as cancer. With digital technology, such visits become reduced even more efficiently, making it less strenuous for patients. Remote monitoring is now made possible, and all a patient has to do is report to their primary care provider using patient metrics in agreeance. Should the patient need urgent attention, doctors can do house calls or provide counseling remotely before showing up in person.
Ease of PA Medical access
For persons who live far from urban areas or major healthcare facilities, telemedicine is a convenient way of accessing a medical doctor’s services without traveling many miles and spending a lot of money. With this technology, doctors can reach even more patients regardless of location.
Efficiency in healthcare delivery
Telemedicine has proven efficient for many healthcare facilities and providers. Firstly, patients do not have to show up at a healthcare facility and wait for hours to be attended to. It also reduces the need to be admitted at a hospital for procedures that can be diagnosed and scheduled for a specific date. With faster ways of accessing and storing patient data, it is easy to communicate with patients and within the facility. Such efficiency not only enhances efficiency within the medical facility but has also translated into customer satisfaction. Telemedicine has also made medical decision-making faster and more accurate.
What is Telehealth?
Telehealth refers to the broad term used to describe clinical and non-clinical services to the overall healthcare industry, as well as to patients. It is characterized by the use of electronic technologies to provide these services, where the parties are not present in the same room.
Here are features offered by telehealth services:
- The Use of Telecommunications Technologies
The rise of telecommunications technologies must be part of the equation for the service to be called Telehealth. These technologies include Smartphones, the internet, video conferencing, streaming media, wireless communication, or wearable devices.
- The Exchange of Electronic Information
Electronic information includes digital images, videos, or files in text form that are stored and communicated through a computer or mobile device.
- Long-Distance Services
The parties involved in the services are not physically present in the same room. A patient may be in the doctor’s clinic while the medical doctor may be in a hospital doing rounds; a medical director may be at his home while he conducts a board meeting to board members in a video conference, or a doctor may be at his own clinic while a patient may be resting in the comforts of her own home.
- Practice Areas that Cover a Wide Range of Specialties
Telehealth is not limited to one specialty but it involves a broad range of coverage, such as telepsychiatry, tele pharmacy, further education for medical practitioners, workshops, conferences, social work, and other clinical and non-clinical services that can be administered through video conferencing, email messaging, or conversations over the phone.
What is Telemedicine?
Telemedicine is the use of technology, security practices, and telecommunication to provide remote clinical convenient health care for remote patients as well those immobile. A primary care physician can now distribute health-related services without being in the same physical environment as the patient. Telemedicine has made it possible for you and the primary care physician to utilize the expertise offered by medical specialists who are far away. Pennsylvania Telemedicine enables health-related issues that require different medical specialists to consult in matters pertaining to patients and medical information. In the era of the rapid evolution of technology and a global pandemic, telehealth is touted to be the future of medicine.
Telemedicine is a subset of telehealth. While telehealth covers both clinical and non-clinical services, telemedicine provides clinical services exclusively. The World Health Organization defines telemedicine as “healing from a distance.”
Telemedicine has a narrower definition in the sense that it is limited to providing clinical services to patients. It involves the interaction of a primary care provider and a patient, where the care of the latter is of paramount priority.
Telemedicine is beneficial for patients who may have problems with the following:
- Lack of transportation
- Lack of mobility
- Decreased funding
- Located in a rural setting
Telemedicine makes healthcare more accessible for patients who may not have access otherwise. It is also usually used for the following:
- Follow-up visits to a doctor
- Management of chronic conditions
- Medication management
- Specialist consultation
- ER diversion
How does telemedicine work?
For telemedicine to work, a medical facility must choose and subscribe to a telemedicine application. There are many in the market because of the increased need of this service. The trick lies in selecting a platform that is easy to navigate and ensures patient information privacy and confidentiality. Most of the applications you will find are cloud-based, giving health care providers the possibility to access and store medical and patient data for a long time to come.
Once subscribed, health care providers can communicate this option to their patients. Telemedicine care benefits are many, and many patients already find it convenient and might be ready to jump on the bandwagon. Some, however, and for valid reasons, are weary of the privacy implications. With quality telemedicine software, they do not have to worry about their data being breached. It is the responsibility of the healthcare provider to ensure that patient privacy is respected at all times.
Telemedicine takes various forms. Patients can reach out to their primary care provider through a text message, email or even phone call. Depending on the software chosen by the health care provider, a wide range of services can be keyed into the system. This may include patient information, diagnoses, prescriptions, scheduled appointments as well as other scheduled medical procedures. An internal team can have access to this information and provide care when the primary care giver is unreachable. Patients can also use the system to report on their progress, reschedule their hospital visits or change prescriptions.
Telemedicine has proven to be effective for a number of reasons, including reducing the cost of health care provision and access. For both health care providers and patients, telemedicine offers an alternative and convenient way of delivering and accessing quality healthcare. However, in an age where data privacy is an issue, the trick lies in finding good software that facilitates the delivery of telehealth services across the board and safeguards the patient’s privacy.
- Credit: Safe Care Express Urgent Care
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