What exactly is telehealth?
Telehealth is the use of information and communication technologies to gain remote access to and management of health care services. Technologies include computers and mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones. This could be technology you use at home. Telehealth can also refer to the use of technology by your health care provider to improve or supplement health care services.
Telehealth, also known as e-health has the following objectives:
- Make health care more accessible to people who live remote communities.
- Provide primary care for a large range of conditions.
- Make services more accessible or convenient for people, who live in rural areas.
- Make medical specialists available.
- Improve communication and care coordination among health care team members and the person receiving care.
- Provide guidance on self-management of health care.
For medical care or consultation, some people may use telephone or web-based services. You are led through a number of questions when you contact or log into a website offering primary or urgent care. Drugs may be prescribed by the doctor or nurse practitioner. Alternatively they might recommend additional medical attention or home care advice.
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What exactly is Telemedicine
Providing healthcare remotely by utilizing electronic information and technology such as computers, cameras, videoconferencing, satellites, wireless communications, and the Internet. When a patient calls their primary care physician for guidance about non-emergency medical issues that don’t require the doctor to see them in person, telemedicine typically takes the form of a phone call.
When necessary, face-to-face consultations are still necessary and are supplemented via telemedicine. The true benefit of telemedicine today is the ease it provides both patients and practitioners by eliminating the need for an in-person visit to receive medical advice or treatment. As comparison to the expense of waiting to see a doctor or other healthcare professional, it is also cost-effective. Once a doctor’s office has closed, telemedicine can still assist in choosing critical calls. In the monitoring of patients with chronic conditions, it is incredibly valuable.
Benefits from telemedicine
- The only equipment needed for telemedicine is a webcam and a secure patient portal that connects the clinician to an internet database of secure electronic medical records.
- This kind of solution gives the treating clinician access to the essential medical records while also guaranteeing the security of the confidential information spoken during a telemedicine conversation.
- Telemedicine advocates emphasize its convenience, shorter wait times, and increased accessibility to high-quality medical diagnosis and treatment.
- The easy access to patient records online has the potential to improve the accuracy and dependability of patient prescriptions.
- By making second opinions more accessible and quick to provide, telemedicine can profit both patients and doctors.
- It results in better health outcomes, which ought to be the main objective of all medical services.
Some examples of telemedicine include medical imaging, video consultations, remote medical diagnosis and evaluations, tele-treatment, and medication management.
Limitations of Telehealth
- Your normal provider may not be consulted throughout treatment.
- Your medical history may not have been taken into account in full.
- If your medical history is complicated, the computer-driven model that is used to make judgments might not be the best fit for you.
- You can’t simply discuss treatment options with your clinician using the program.
Several studies that directly compared telemedicine to other patient management strategies have demonstrated that there is a distinct advantage to using telemedicine. Teleradiology, telemental health, telecardiology (especially echocardiography), home telecare, and teledermatology all saw the biggest benefits. Nonetheless, most academics concur that more research is needed due to the scant current information regarding the advantages or cost-effectiveness of telemedicine.