What is Telemedicine?
Telemedicine allows patients to access specialists and doctors who work in remote healthcare facilities from the comfort of their local community hospital. It also allows doctors and specialists to access other professionals for consultations. Telemedicine can help reduce healthcare costs while minimizing patient travel time and time away from work and family. Ultimately, Telemedicine can increase the speed and accuracy at which diagnoses are rendered and care can be provided.
How does Telemedicine work?
A telemedicine consultation is very similar to an in-person consultation from a physician. The main difference being the interaction will be over a video screen versus an in-person discussion. Current technology allows a very high level of detail to be relayed across the network allowing physicians an accurate view of the patient. In addition, a nurse, specialist, or doctor will always be available, most times in the actual room as the patient to take vital signs and physical exams. A telemedicine consultation is used as an added level of support, not to remove hands-on care.
Does Telemedicine better patient outcomes?
Yes, there are many reports showing better patient outcomes, faster and increased access to care, and lower costs to patients and healthcare organizations.
Does Telemedicine remove the need for a live doctor?
Telemedicine will continue to enhance the way healthcare is received. The goal is not to replace live doctor and physician support, but to create a network of knowledge and skill to enhance the ability hospitals.
How can Telemedicine impact my local community?
Telemedicine can allow smaller hospitals the same expertise as larger healthcare organization. In return, rural communities may be more attractive to the people living within.
How does a patient access Telemedicine services?
Talk with you provider to ask if their healthcare organization currently uses, or will be using, Telemedicine services. As technology access increases so will the capabilities of the Telemedicine program.