Post Date: October 24, 2017

Medical technology has made enormous advances in recent years, resulting in shorter patient stays and less invasive procedures. It is even used to keep patients from being admitted to the hospital. How? Through the use of telemedicine.

Telemedicine, or telemedical platforms, uses an audiovisual software platform for video chat between clinicians, nurses, and patients. With this, a physician or nurse practitioner can perform follow up visits with patients without the need for an in-person appointment. The patient gets the face to face time with the clinician and is able to show and tell any symptoms or improvements since the last clinic visit.

What are the benefits of this type of technology? Clearly, a video conference cannot replace physical exams or lab testing. What it can replace, however, are mandatory post-hospital visit checks, checks that are required by many insurance companies, and that doctors themselves desire, to ensure that the patient is healing correctly. For patients in assisted living, or without reliable transportation, these video appointments can make the difference in their quality of healthcare.

Under the current healthcare system, patients may be released from the hospital and then have to be readmitted because of a lack of post-acute follow-up care. With telemedicine, patients are able to be professionally evaluated, with at-home post-hospital care recommended. The repeat trips to the hospital can be even more unhealthy for the patient, and telemedicine removes that risk.

The need for transportation to and from the hospital, such as with an ambulance, is reduced, making those vehicles available more readily for acute emergencies. Providers from the clinic or hospital can evaluate patients around the clock, as long as the staff is available, and recommend at home care, rest, or that the patient is readmitted through the video conferencing. Best of all the telemedical platform is able to retain a patient history report, for easier access to the patient’s history if they access a different provider.

Technology has helped create a more efficient lifestyle in many ways. Now, it can create a more efficient medical system, also. Reducing the number of patients readmitted to hospitals can enhance both the patient wellbeing and streamline hospital treatment for other patients.