4 Reasons Telemedicine Is Nothing to Fear

During the current global pandemic, patients might fear going to the doctor’s office. One of the most viable ways to overcome that fear is by making a telemedicine appointment. Many patients who are nervous about their virtual appointment end up pleasantly surprised.

 

The truth is even some physicians have questions about telemedicine. They might wonder if the quality of care they can provide will go down or if it will take too many resources to train physicians in the technology. Here are 4 reasons why telemedicine is nothing to fear.

 

#1: Improves Patient Satisfaction

A primary benefit is that patients feel safe at home, especially if they have chronic health conditions. The ease of access means they don’t have to commute or miss out on work either. They can “visit” you right from their home office or workplace. Fewer barriers to care means it’s less likely that your patient will be a “no show,” too.

 

Furthermore, many patients end up feeling more comfortable sharing personal information in the privacy of their own home. Not only does this build a patient-physician relationship, it makes for better diagnosis and treatment, too.

 

#2: Increases Profitability

Telemedicine helps physicians see more patients in less time. In these appointments, a patient and physician often get through a “visit” more quickly. This enables physicians to have more appointments in one day, increasing the utilization of your staff. As a result, you might need fewer staff in place than before, reducing costs for your healthcare facility.

 

More patients will have access to care, particularly if they are in rural or hard to reach areas. Patients who were previously unable to visit the office are now able to receive telehealth treatment. This means your patient base will grow.

 

#3: Decreases Hospital Readmissions

Patients might make follow-up trips to the emergency room or urgent care after a health scare or serious health concern. Many of these trips end up being non-emergency. Telemedicine makes it easier for patients to access follow-up care, particularly if they cannot go to appointments in person. It’s easier for providers to stay in ongoing contact with a patient after a health concern, reducing any fear or anxiety a patient might have.

 

This allows hospitals to cut down on readmission rates, saving resources for patients who need emergency care and reducing a patient’s exposure to disease.

 

#4: Expands Access to Specialists

Plenty of healthcare facilities need to staff multiple locations with specialists. Specialists are often in high demand but low supply, making it difficult to care for every patient who needs special care. With the barrier of transportation and location removed, telemedicine makes it easier for specialists to reach more patients.

 

Patients who live in remote areas, have busy schedules, or need to stay home for health concerns will be able to access specialists during the pandemic. Even patients who were simply unable to get specialist appointments will have better access to the care they need.

 

Implement Telemedicine in Your Practice

Telemedicine improves patient health, happiness, and access to care. Get in touch with us today to learn how we can help you add telemedicine to your practice.

telehealth for children

Children across the country are adapting to the disruption of COVID-19. Now more than ever, telehealth in school is an excellent way to keep our kids healthy and safe. However, the increase in virtual care for children in school was happening well before the pandemic started.

Are you a school administrator interested in implementing these services in your school? Or perhaps you are a physician who is trying to offer your services to more people? Here are some ways virtual health can help children.

The Difficulties Schools and Parents Face

First, let’s discuss the primary issue that keeps kids from getting the care they need—access to convenient care.

If you are a parent with a child in school, you know how inconvenient it can be to take your child to the doctor when they get sick at school. You may have to leave work, pick them up at school, and drive them to the doctor, who might be located up to an hour away.

Some children don’t get sick that often. For others who suffer from chronic conditions that require regular visits to a physician—diabetes, asthma, and developmental disabilities, to name a few—seeing a doctor can be extremely inconvenient.

Many children do not even have access to healthcare outside of school. In some cases, their parents do not make enough money to provide them the care they need. Not receiving essential medical care can lead to absenteeism and cause a child to fall behind. Telehealth at school can help to bridge this gap.

How Virtual Care Helps Kids in School

Here are a few ways that school-based virtual healthcare can benefit children:

Parents and Primary Care Providers Can Participate

Instead of driving from work to school to the doctor’s office, parents can instead join via video. The child’s primary care provider can also join the call for any medical care that requires their guidance.

Immediate Care

When injury or illness happens at school, children need to have access to care right away. With telehealth services at school, they can get access quickly.

Disadvantaged Children Can Get Care

Students who would not normally receive care can access the medical help they need at school. Whether they need care regarding dental, behavioral, or medical care, they can get it with the help of technology.

Fewer Missed Classes

When children miss too many classes, they are more likely to fall behind their peers. Students who perform better in class are more likely to graduate from high school, which can improve their overall quality of life. Implementing telehealth in school can make it so they only miss part of the day.

Get More Information on Implementing Telehealth Services

Are you interested in learning how to implement virtual health services at your school? Want to offer your health services to schools in your area? Get in touch with Virtual Possibilities today so we can discuss your needs.

Want a Successful Virtual Care Visit? 6 Tips for Physicians Who Are New to Virtual Healthcare

Virtual care is growing more popular by the day among patients and physicians, especially since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Perhaps a few of the reasons for its growing popularity include the ease of access to medical professionals that it offers patients, the additional revenue stream it offers physicians, and the safety from infectious disease that it offers patients.

At one New York hospital, urgent and non-urgent virtual appointments grew by 683 percent and 4,345 percent, respectively, between early March and mid-April.

The need to teach providers how to conduct a successful virtual care visit is obvious. These six tips will help physicians and clinicians offer their virtual patients valuable telehealth services.

6 Tips for Your Next Virtual Care Visit

Offering virtual health services is not as simple as transferring skills that providers use during in-person visits to virtual space, though many of those skills remain important. To summarize, providers need to communicate more effectively to compensate for the limitations of interacting through a digital medium.

Try these tips if you find virtual care visits challenging at first:

Introduce Yourself and Clearly State Your Role

As the provider, you are responsible for setting the tone of your virtual appointments. One of the best ways to present a professional, informative persona during these appointments is to introduce yourself and tell your patient what your role is as their care provider.

Make Your Patient Feel Comfortable

It is also important not to take on a tone that is too formal during the visit. You want to make your patient feel comfortable so that they open up to you about their concerns. When they describe the issue that they are having, make sure to validate their concerns verbally. You can also make them feel like they are being heard by addressing them by their name.

Discuss Confidentiality and Consent

Before the visit, be sure to confirm patient consent. At the time of the visit, also discuss patient confidentiality, especially concerning others in their end who might be able to hear your conversation.

Introduce Staff Who May Be Participating

Continuing with the confidentiality conversation, if there is anyone from your staff who will be participating in the virtual care visit, introduce them at the beginning of the appointment to avoid any surprises.

Collect Feedback on the Virtual Care Visit

Each virtual appointment presents an opportunity for you to improve your processes, so consider collecting feedback from your patient at the end of the visit. They may have some insights into how you can make your appointments more effective and more enjoyable for your patients.

Follow up with Your Patients

After your virtual visit, be sure to follow up with your patient. If you referred your patient to a specialist, make sure that they are able to connect, either online or in person.

Talk to Us about Implementing Your Virtual Care Services Today

Now that you understand a few of the keys to a successful virtual patient visit, get in touch with us to see how we can help you implement virtual healthcare for your practice.