A diabetic patient will have a hard time trying to reach the city for a medical appointment. On the other hand, a doctor in Mexico requires a specialist in U.S for opinions. These are the just some of the many examples where telehealth can be of help in improving healthcare.
Two health organizations using telehealth technology in San Diego are the Telemedicine Program at UC San Diego Health and La Maestra Community Health Centers and have given positive reports concerning the invention.
Telemedicine is very convenient especially for individuals who cannot reach their physician probably due to lack of funds or due to their severe health condition, as stated by the Telemedicine Program at UCSD Health’s manager, Lisa Moore.
Moreover, considering a situation of busy people like parents, they need to work and also take care of their kids. It gets hard for them to work and take their children to the doctor, and this is where telemedicine comes in. Telemedicine provides them with access to see their doctor at anytime from anywhere.
The primary goal of telemedicine is to make health care more convenient and accessible for all patients. It is the same objective that drives telemedicine at La Maestra. It has four main clinics and two school based sites. They serve patients below the poverty level. Also, they serve patients who speak about 30 languages and dialects and therefore, they are trained cultural liaisons to assist them in the telehealth process.
The two organizations” leaders have overseen telemedicine as a success in healthcare. They believe that it will bring in positive results and will make things much easier for both the patients and the physicians. A study showed that previously, most patients did not turn up for appointments with their doctors. Some gave excuses like language barrier while others complained of the lack of funds, but this was going to end.
With telehealth, patients will have a video visit with a physician who speaks their language, and this reduces the no-show rate. The rate went down from 50% to 13% in the first year which is a great achievement for the health organizations. This will help in both primary and ICU health care where the patient is in severe condition.