Telemedicine, a combination of two words; Tele and Medicine is simply the provision of medical service over a long distance through the use of electronic devices. This can be further explained as the practice of providing healthcare services such as diagnosis, consultation, drug prescription, monitoring patient progress in a situation whereby the patient is not present in the hospital but communicating over an electronic means such as video calling, texting, voice call etc.
This system was started a long time ago with the minimal ability of the technological devices then, but with the continuous growth in technology, its only normal that the use of telemedicine has also grown with the technology over time and improved a lot.
The major purpose of Telemedicine is to reduce patient-provider contact for consultations that do not require an in-person visit. And though this has always been very important, its benefits are very evident in the current novel coronavirus pandemic, where healthcare professionals are at a higher risk of contacting the virus due to their continuous contact with patients.
Benefits of Telemedicine
As already stated, the major purpose of telemedicine is to reduce the patient-provider contact in situations where in-person visit is not required. This comes with so many benefits for both the patients and the medical service providers of which we will be discussing a few:
- It cuts down costs of Transportation for patients
- It helps guarantee the occurrence of a follow up visit since it can be simply done over the phone from anywhere.
- Saves patients the risk of travelling long distance for basic consultation.
- Reduces the exposure of patients to other patients suffering from contagious illnesses.
- Reduces the contact between patients and providers thereby eliminating the possibility of either contracting an illness from the other.
- Guarantees privacy for patients.
- Helps patients from rural places have access to quality healthcare without having to travel to the city.
- Reduces the probability of appointments getting cancelled due to change in plans or unexpected occurrences.
- Increases revenue for healthcare providers as more patients seek medical care due to the ease of the process.
- Increases access to healthcare for all irrespective of location or situation.
- Increased productivity from providers.
With all the above benefits, we can already see how Telemedicine is improving the Patients outcomes, nonetheless, lets discuss in specifics some of the ways Telemedicine is being used to improve patient outcomes.
- Remote Patient Access
Anyone can easily book appointment on an app and get to have a doctor diagnose or talk to them over a couple without having to visit in person. During this consultation, the doctor will decide if there is any need for a physical consultation.
2. Patients suffering from Chronic Illnesses
Suffering from a chronic illness in most cases means the patient will find it hard to move from one place to the other, visiting the hospital is not an exception. Telemedicine can be of huge help to patients like this, where they can easily be attended to or monitored by a doctor from any part of the world to support them and ensure they performing their treatment properly.
3. Follow up Visits
When a patient visits the hospital once, if there is no need for physical touch of the doctor, they can easily have follow-up visits over a call or text rather than visit the hospital in person.
4. Elderly Patients
Telemedicine direct application can be seen in situations where patients are elderly people, who already find it very hard to even perform normal day to day activities. For patients like it, telemedicine is a big benefit as there are lots of situations where they don’t really need to be in the hospital in person, and can just have a consultation with the doctor over a call or text. This gives them easy access to healthcare and makes their lives a whole lot easier.
5. Addiction Support
With the growing number of people battling obesity, some sort of drug abuse among many other addictions, telemedicine can be very useful in providing them the support they need to become successful and live better lives.
6. Rural Healthcare Access
Telemedicine can play a huge role in providing patients from distant villages with quality healthcare access without having to travel long distant risking their lives to obtain quality healthcare.
7. Educational Institutions Health Support
In most educational institutions, there will be some healthcare facilities but with very minimal ability. To support this healthcare facility, these institutions can partner with hospitals to provide healthcare service through tele medicine to decide if there’s a need for Hospitalization of the patient.
Its undeniable that telemedicine has its lows such as inaccessibility to internet in bad network prone regions but it’s also undeniable that the highs are way ahead of the lows. Telemedicine has seen a lot of growth and will keep expanding in years to come.
Despite all the disaster the corona virus has caused, its important to note that it has also emphasized the importance of telemedicine in our world today and has also shown how easy it is to implement.
To implement telemedicine in your facility using the most secured end to end encrypted system, visit our website at DruCare.