Telemedicine has many advantages. First, it can improve access to care, for example in communities without providers. It may also be a more practical alternative for some patients, such as those with work or caring responsibilities. Another thing that telemedicine is particularly effective at is reducing some of the stigma associated with seeking care in person. If you have a substance use disorder, for example, you may be reluctant to seek treatment at a local treatment center because you fear being seen there. Telemedicine allows you to receive the care you need in the privacy of your home.
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Interestingly, however, telemedicine’s greatest strength – its convenience – may also be its greatest weakness. Because telemedicine is so convenient, it can lead patients to seek care for problems that might resolve on their own or for reasons that might not improve the health of the population. This can therefore lead to overuse, which is a major concern of telemedicine. Another disadvantage of telemedicine is that it is not always suitable for all cases and does not always offer equivalent quality. This is because providers cannot perform a physical exam and cannot use all of their senses to aid in diagnosis and treatment decisions. IHiS SmartCMS EMR Clinic Management System Lab Integration Queue Management System Xero Integration Full Feature List Frequently Asked Questions
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Undeniably, patients worried about the spread of the virus would feel more comfortable consulting doctors online. This is how telemedicine comes into play.
In this article, we will give you an in-depth look at telemedicine, how it works, what the telemedicine regulations are, and how to set up telemedicine in your clinic.
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Telemedicine, more specifically teleconsultation, is a form of consultation provided primarily by videoconferencing for clinical purposes. It has become the ultimate solution for patients during the COVID-19 pandemic by providing quality healthcare in a convenient and safe manner.
Just as the WHO (World Health Organization) defines telemedicine as “remote healing”, telemedicine allows the entire process of consulting patients and doctors who diagnose their pathology and prescribe treatments to be carried out online. correspondents.
Telemedicine, although used interchangeably with “telehealth” in the Ministry of Health’s National Telemedicine Guidelines (NTG), is a subset of telemedicine, with the umbrella term also including other non-clinical events such as administrative meetings and doctor training. While telemedicine refers to teleconsultation, telemedicine does not refer to any specific service, but to a set of methods aimed at improving overall patient care.
Store-and-transmit telemedicine, or “asynchronous telemedicine,” allows patients and multiple healthcare providers to collaborate by sharing patient medical information such as medical imaging, biosignals and test results in an integrated system , integrated and secure while guaranteeing patient confidentiality. . It effectively helps all healthcare providers review necessary information when it is convenient for them and gives patients access to a care team of providers located in different locations and time zones.
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Remote patient monitoring is also called self-monitoring or self-testing. The key element is the use of technological devices to remotely monitor the patient’s clinical signs, widely used in the management of chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes mellitus and asthma. Advanced equipment can automatically transmit medical data to healthcare professionals, allowing them to provide a better level of care and detect the most obvious signs of problems. It also significantly reduces costs and the time a patient has to spend in the hospital.
Real-time telemedicine is also called live telemedicine, which simplifies doctor-patient interaction across time and space. This includes any real-time, two-way communication between healthcare providers and patients through modalities such as videoconferencing and telephone consultations. Medical history assessments, basic vision exams, psychiatric evaluations, and even eye tests can be performed via telemedicine in real time.
Now you know what telemedicine is and what the types of telemedicine are. But how does the telemedicine system work? What types of technologies enable communication between a healthcare provider in the hospital and a patient at home? How can medical services be provided in the system?
Network connections connect remote health clinics to larger health facilities such as metropolitan hospitals, creating health service networks. Networks allow small clinics to outsource medical care to specialists across time and space.
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Monitoring Center Links are intended for remote patient monitoring by creating a digital connection between the patient’s home and a remote monitoring facility. It allows a healthcare provider to monitor the patient’s condition, which is very useful for patients suffering from chronic illnesses.
Based on the system programs, you can offer medical services to your patients in two main ways: a patient portal and virtual appointments.
As a secure system, a patient portal allows you to transmit information to your patients such as providing prescriptions and sharing test results, while virtual appointments allow you to have video conference consultations with your patients.
Some people mistakenly believe that as long as the remote communication of electronic protected health information (ePHI) occurs between the healthcare provider and the patient, the HIPAA Privacy Rule will apply.
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The first point would be satisfied if physicians adopted “reasonable and appropriate safeguards” to prevent ePHI from being disclosed to unauthorized parties. The second point means that insecure communication channels such as Skype and email should not be used to communicate ePHI remotely, as a healthcare organization is required to have a Business Associate Agreement (BAA) with the third party that stores ePHI, which is absent in the case of Skype or Google.
Finally, per HIPAA telehealth guidelines, any remote ePHI communication system must have security mechanisms in place to remotely monitor and delete the communication if necessary. The system should also have automatic disconnect capabilities if not used for a period of time.
The NTG covers four areas: “Clinical Standards and Outcomes”, “Human Resources”, “Organizational” and “Technology and Equipment”. It specifies that the duty and quality of care must be established and maintained within the framework of telemedicine, which “must be provided within the framework of a structured and well-organized system and the overall standard of care delivered by the system must not not be inferior to that of a system. service that does not use telemedicine.” It is also emphasized that the privacy and confidentiality of patients, as well as their informed consent, must be guaranteed and given.
The prevalence of chronic diseases is increasing in Singapore. According to the Health Promotion Board, one in four Singaporeans aged 40 and above suffer from at least one chronic illness, including diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and stroke. Take the example of diabetes: if nothing is done to control it, the number of people with diabetes is expected to increase from 450,000 today to one million by 2050. It is clear that managing the growing number of Chronic disease cases have become a priority for health workers.
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Telemedicine therefore proves to be an effective tool in the management of chronic diseases, thanks to its cost-effectiveness and its monitoring functionalities which expand access to specialized care for patients. Specific benefits of telemedicine in chronic disease management are discussed below.
Patients with chronic illness typically suffer from mobility issues while requiring specialized care for their treatment. Having to travel to see specialists makes it difficult to obtain regular treatment. However, with telemedicine, patients can easily correspond regularly with healthcare professionals, even for specialized medical care, from the comfort of their home. It reduces, or even eliminates, travel costs and therefore considerably increases patients’ access to specialized care.
Except for medications, patients with chronic illnesses usually need to make lifestyle changes, such as their diet and exercise frequency, to improve their condition. However, changing long-term habits is not easy if patients are left alone, which means their condition could worsen.
But when healthcare professionals can monitor patients’ conditions remotely, they can see whether patients are following treatment and quickly remind them to take a walk or eat healthily, improving their chances of recovery.
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In addition to lifestyle changes, symptoms that may be a sign of a worsening or new chronic illness should also be monitored. These symptoms may seem insignificant or mild, and patients may refuse to see the patient because they have to travel long distances for an in-person consultation.
But telemedicine allows immediate consultations. Patients with chronic illnesses can get quick advice on changes to make
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