With the advent of the lockdown and face-to face meetings put on hold, the industry was very quickly to pivot and bring about a new system that seems to be here to stay.
Telemedicine was used occasionally before but was not widely offered by many professionals in any part of the healthcare industry. When businesses were forced to close because of the COVID-19 virus, Telemedicine appointments sprang into action, solving a lot of problems. Also WoW Health offers healthsharing solutions too.
1. The Need for Face-to-Face Meetings
While it can’t be helped in some situations, face-to-face meetings are not always required for treating patients. Before Telemedicine, there were no other options but to have every meeting face to face, regardless of what the content was. This put an enormous time and resources restraint on both the patient and the doctor.
By scheduling appointments through Telemedicine, it allows the opportunity for the patient to get the help they need without having to go out in public. In addition, the doctor and their team don’t have multiple people coming into the office.
2. Time Restraints
For both the practitioner and the patient, Telemedicine provides a streamline approach that saves everyone time. For the patient, not having to drive to the appointments, wait in the waiting room, and then drive back home saves a lot of time and energy. They are able to log into the appointment and wait comfortably in their own home.
For the practitioner, they can set up a que of patients and click through them as they finish. Instead of having to go from one room to another, dealing with physical charts, they can have everything laid out and work through in one spot.
Not everyone lives in an area where medical access is easy. For patients in rural areas, you could be talking more than an hour to drive to the nearest doctors office. Even for those in populated areas, if there is a condition the doctors on site need help with, accessing a specialist requires phone calls, emails, and potentially a lot of travel for the patient.
For those that need to be able to talk to a doctor or specialist, many times a telehealth appointment can be enough to gain the insight needed to keep the health of the patient moving forward.
4. Follow-Ups and Monitoring
After the initial meeting with the doctor or specialist, there are always variables that need to be monitored so progress can be tracked and adjustments can be made. Before telehealth was an option, this required the patient to go back into the office, sometimes every few days or every week, so the doctor could check in and see how they were feeling. This not only cost the patient time and money but it also put more stress on the doctors office to have more people in the building, going through the receptionists, and being in the treatment rooms for appointments that many times might only last a few minutes.
Telemedicine was something that needed to happen during this pandemic so that patients could still get the assistance they needed, when they needed it. As we have become used to it, not only does it help the patients but it also assists the doctors that use it, keep more open resources for those who need them, and provide access to people who may have had challenges getting the care they needed before.