Telemedicine is the use of information technology and telecommunication devices to provide a healthcare remotely. It is intended to solve distance barriers, improve access to quality healthcare, and designed to save lives in emergency and critical situations.
Telemedicine began when astronauts first went into space. The early spacecraft had a telemedicine technology to keep track of the astronaut’s health. Succeeding milestones boost the use of telemedicine in the healthcare.
Brief History of Telemedicine
The birth of telecommunication paves the way to the inception of telemedicine. Few hospitals started experimenting with telemedicine about fifty years ago to reach patients in far-flung areas. It started in the U.S. as a way to resolve the shortages of the physicians.
Telemedicine has tremendously changed. Due to a substantial advancement in technology, it became an integrated service in hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare facilities. During emergencies, it is used to provide patient health records and medical consultation without delay.
At present, people around the world are using telemedicine to provide quality healthcare or help a patient with mobility problems consult a physician from home. It was also used to reach urban populations with shortages of physicians. Currently, people are using telemedicine for convenience, to save time in the waiting room at the doctor, and to get prompt care.
Many companies are motivated to offer patients a 24/7 access to medical care and a platform for the doctor’s virtual visits with their patients. The advancement in technology provides an edge in a competitive healthcare. The wide variety of advanced health apps enables the physician to monitor the health of their patients.
With the advanced medical devices, patients can determine the vital signs, infections, glucose levels, blood pressure without going to the doctor’s clinic or hospital. As patients become proactive about using technology to detect the status of their health, they also become receptive to get an alternative care through telemedicine. Here are some examples of the advantages of Telemedicine:
Accessibility of Quality Health Care
Remote regions get a quality patient care without delay. Clinics in rural areas use video for the interaction between the patient and a specialist in the city. Doctors are also using telemedicine to monitor the situation and provide treatment to patients in remote areas, at home, and in another hospital or clinic.
Provides Convenience to Patients
Telemedicine eradicates the time spent in a crowded room waiting for the physician, with other coughing patients. It helps you save your strength and prevents you from being infected by others.
It provides ease of scheduling. Your appointment with your physician can be set online or through your mobile phone and consultation can be done via video technology. It places the power of health through a click of the mouse or press on your phone. It also reduced the burden of traveling.
Telemedicine also provides easy access for immobile patients. Patients with complex medical conditions can be given a quality health care from a specialist in another hospital through the use of telemedicine. It provides easy access to quality health care for patients in a very critical condition.
Saves Time for Both the Physician and Patient
It enables the patient to save travel time. Patients who need to travel millions of miles to reach a physical can benefit from telemedicine. It enables effective communication, examination, and treatment of the patients in different locations.
Telemedicine saves the time of physicians. They can connect with patients on a more flexible schedule. It also reduces no-shows because it gives the patient the most convenient way to have an appointment with the physicians. If ever patients missed the appointments, they can easily replace that time by online scheduling.
It also lessens the overhead cost of the physician. Shorter office hours means saving operating expenses such as salaries, electricity, etc. With telemedicine, physicians can continue their work at home.
Saves Cost for Both the Physician and Patient
It eliminates travel expenses. Many patients do not have the financial capacity to travel for medical treatment. However, with telemedicine, they are given a better opportunity to seek medical care.
Telemedicine is helpful for patients with several chronic ailments which require continuous medication. It helps them spend less for hospital bills. It would allow them to have the medication at home with quality health care. With video calling, it is easier to enhance patient satisfaction through remote quality health care.
Provides a 24/7 Quality Health Services
The patient sometimes needs immediate care from the physician outside the physician’s office hours. With telemedicine, the physician can have a quick overview and appropriate advice that could save the patient’s hassle, time, and money. Telemedicine extends the physician’s working hours and increases the physician’s the availability of urgent service.
Telemedicine is a crucial part of healthcare. It is one of the rapidly growing sectors in health care. It is designed to enhance the delivery of quality healthcare while reducing costs. It places the patient at the focal point of health care. It is experiencing rapid growth. More and more physicians and patients are using this method. Experts are continuously looking for ways to improve telemedicine and make it more viable for many medical scenarios.