The 2020 coronavirus pandemic has changed how most people shop, socialize, attend classes, and work. It’s also had a significant impact on the way people receive medical care. To reduce the spread of COVID-19, healthcare providers have used telemedicine more than ever before.
The volume of patients receiving telehealth services has more than quadrupled from the number of patients who received telehealthcare in 2019, rising from 11% of patients to 46% of patients receiving healthcare services. Telemedicine offers multiple benefits and could impact the way healthcare services are delivered for decades to come.
What is telemedicine?
The most common form of telemedicine also referred to as telehealth, involves providing medical services remotely. It includes phone consultations and appointments via video conferencing apps. Physicians may also email information to patients.
Telemedicine also includes monitoring patients remotely. Medical professionals may work from biosignals or images transmitted without a consultation. Healthcare experts may also use remote monitoring. Technological devices can transmit relevant data to healthcare professionals, who can monitor their patients’ conditions without real-time interaction.
Telemedicine services are provided by doctors, nurse practitioners, and a wide range of medical specialists, including cardiologists. Patients can also receive physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy services remotely. Therapists, psychologists, and counselors can also deliver mental health services via telemedicine.
How does telemedicine benefit patients?
Using telemedicine enables you to experience the benefits of virtual visits. You can access quality healthcare from the comfort of your own home. You don’t have to worry about finding childcare or bringing your toddlers to your medical appointment. Telemedicine reduces the number of potential complications that can make it difficult to attend appointments in person.
You also attend telehealth appointments in suitable attire. For example, if you’re recovering from surgery and need to have a follow-up appointment with your physician, you can wear stretch pants during your telemedicine appointment. Stretch pants and jeggings can provide support without aggravating injuries or stitches. You can complete your outfit with a comfortable top or tunic.
Your appointments are private. If you’ve found it uncomfortable to raise common health questions that men have in front of a nurse when you’ve attended appointments in person, you may appreciate the opportunity to talk to your doctor one on one.
Weather and traffic issues won’t affect your ability to receive healthcare. When you schedule a telemedicine appointment, you don’t have to worry about shoveling snow from your driveway or budgeting extra time for traffic delays.
Telemedicine has also reduced the cost of healthcare. It’s an effective way to treat patients with cardiovascular issues and can be used to deliver preventative healthcare.
Telemedicine enables more people to access healthcare. It’s easier for patients with disabilities to receive treatment. It can also be used to provide care to patients who live in remote areas.
How do medical professionals benefit from telemedicine?
Telemedicine is an economical option for medical professionals. When more patients are receiving telehealth services, it reduces the need for medical supplies and examination rooms. Doctors and nurses do not need to use protective gear as often, either.
In addition to lowering their costs, medical professionals can increase their revenue by providing care to more patients. Since telemedicine reduces physical barriers, healthcare professionals may expand services to people outside their immediate location. It’s also easier for healthcare providers to stay on schedule when providing telehealth services because it’s less likely that patients will be delayed due to weather or traffic issues. This means healthcare providers can schedule more appointments.
Using telemedicine helps reduce the spread of illnesses. Patients and medical professionals benefit from this. When fewer people are exposed to viruses, fewer people become ill. Reducing the infection rate reduces strain on healthcare services. It also protects medical professionals from becoming ill.
Telemedicine enables healthcare providers to monitor patients remotely and provide healthcare services via phone, video chat, or email. Patients and medical professionals enjoy multiple benefits from telemedicine, such as convenience, increased access to healthcare, and lower costs. Telemedicine also prevents patients and healthcare providers from being exposed to viruses.