There is no denying the effect of COVID-19 on the world. It has changed how we do the most fundamental things, such as shopping, going to school or work, dining out, and medical appointments. One of the most significant emerging medical practices since the beginning of the pandemic has been telehealth. For some branches of medicine, this is relatively simple. Psychologists, for example, can quickly turn what would have been an office visit into a telehealth appointment via phone or computer. But for hematologists, making the switch was not without difficulties.
However, telehealth has provided the best way to avoid possible exposure to COVID-19. After adapting their practices to allow for video-based services to limit patient exposure to the pandemic, hematologists began to see improved patient satisfaction numbers. There are still some significant obstacles to providing everyone with telehealth services. One of the biggest is the lack of communication available for patients living in an area with little or no wi-fi signal. Another is the hesitancy of some patients to become involved with these appointments due to fears of HIPPA rights being violated.
So, where do hematologists go from here? Though things have improved for many patients, there is still work to be done regarding some at-risk groups, such as the elderly, those without proper insurance, and those with little income. Many patients have had their fears assuaged regarding HIPPA procedures after months of successful telehealth appointments. Telehealth is much more likely to expand following the pandemic, adding even more services for patients.
Patients have even begun embracing their telehealth appointments. They are incredibly convenient. You answer the phone or sign on to speak to your doctor instead of having to drop everything for a face-to-face visit. Your appointment will take less time than a regular visit, leaving more time to enjoy. As time passes, hematologists will likely continue to utilize telehealth technology and incorporate more tasks into non-contact visits. Telehealth holds rewards for everyone, from the physician to the patient, allowing proper treatment without face-to-face contact.