Top 10 Reasons Telemedicine is Good
According to the Mayo Clinic, telemedicine most commonly refers to “the communication with or among a patient’s health care team via video connection, secure text messaging or another platform rather than in person. It can be used to schedule appointments, answer questions, handle routine checkups, allow physicians in different locations to consult about a patient’s case, collect vital signs or even to help examine and diagnose patients. To protect patient privacy, secure communication methods are used.”
Initially, telemedicine was created as a means to provide care to patients in rural areas who did not have easy access to hospitals with specialists available. Now however, telemedicine has evolved to bring even more benefits and advantages to patient care. Internet Innovation Alliance lists 10 of them:
1. Enables more informed decision-making and enhanced quality of care
2. Saves lives through remote consultations whether urgent or diagnostic
3. Creates more efficient, convenient and potentially more cost-effective delivery of care
4. Facilitates earlier – and more accurate – diagnoses
5. Provides greater, and faster, access to a patient’s medical history, reducing the risk of negative drug interactions or poor response to a course of treatment
6. Improves administrative efficiency and coordination
7. Allows rural residents to receive expert diagnosis and treatment from distant medical centers
8. Increases timeliness of treatment and decreases transfer rates, while reducing medical costs through video technology
9. Supports real-time treatment by first responders through the use of wireless devices
10. Enhances senior wellness and preventative care through telemedicine and remote in-home monitoring.
“Telemedicine has been around since the mid-90s but with rapid acceleration and adoption of technological advancements, we are seeing a paradigm shift in the way we understand and practice healthcare,” says Richard Kimball, CEO of HEXL, a healthcare technology company. “The potential telemedicine has to innovate healthcare is significant. We are already seeing changes in reimbursement to help aid its integration.”
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