Post Date: December 16, 2015

Shriners Hospital for Children is using telemedicine to spread the cheer to the children. They are testing a new program where children can video chat with Santa Claus.

Shriners Hospital for Children is taking part in a doctor-patient video conferencing program that is set to begin next year. The Santa Chat program is being used as a test drive program, and children are now able to get an experience they would not have gotten due to their illnesses. Children can speak to Santa Claus from the hospital and even those who have disorders that inhibit speech are still able to have a Santa Claus experience.

The video chat program is being used to find out whether telemedicine can be used by orthopedic and neuromusculoskeletal specialists. It is aimed at making the doctor-patient experience better. By the use of high-quality video chat with medical records being made available and accessible at both ends in the chat.

However, this comes with a few challenges, especially in the orthopedic department. This is because this is more of a hands-on field as doctors will need to feel and see how the muscles, bones and joints are moving and not only see them move. This can mean that there will be need to have a facilitator who will act as an intermediary and tells the orthopedic surgeon what is going on.

Despite this challenge, telemedicine is still effective in making the services of specialists more accessible to patients in different geographical regions. This improves the quality of service being delivered especially to patients with medical conditions that require expert opinions. Patients are now able to receive treatment from their primary hospitals.

The integration of telemedicine has also cut down on transport costs for patients and hospitals. Hospitals like Shriners would spend a lot of money transporting children to their appointments. Teleconferencing will ensure that patients will not have to travel to see specialists for their appointments. This can save lots of money for hospitals that can be directed to other projects.