Healthcare services are vital. However, the cost and access to the best care continue to be a challenge. Patients, physicians, healthcare providers and other stakeholders in the sector are looking into technology for help. One way they are doing that is through telemedicine.
What is Telemedicine?
It refers to the use of telecommunication to deliver clinical care. It utilizes the transfer of medical data, such as medical records, images, and videos, from the patient to the physician. The primary function of telemedicine was to overcome logistical challenges between doctors and patients.
How Is Telemedicine Saving More Lives
Used In Emergency Care
Common heart and pulmonary conditions can easily lead to death if they go untreated for a few minutes. Even if there is no physician nearby, telemedicine can be used to deliver care to the patient remotely.
Physicians are helping patients with stroke, heart attacks, and acute pulmonary conditions. In the process, they are improving patient outcomes in emergencies. A patient can receive care even when all roads are rendered impassable by traffic or storm.
Used In Preventive Care
Many chronic diseases require regular monitoring. Diabetes, heart conditions, allergic rhinitis, and other conditions can now be monitored from a distance. The patient can continually stay under care and supervision even when he is not inside a health facility.
This option is reducing the number of hospitalizations and inpatient admissions. In places such Sub-Saharan African where hospitals admit up to 200% their bed occupancy, telemedicine is the only hope. It can facilitate patients from upcountry to access care without having to visit hospitals. Some will take several days to reach the designated health centers. By the time they arrive there, their situation will have worsened.
If the patients access a doctor on time, they will soon recover. If they don’t, they will go to hospitals and put pressure on the few hospital resources available.
Improve the Quality of Decision-Making
To make it possible, it involves rigorous evidence to make a diagnosis. Since the physician is not present, images and videos play a significant role. In the process, the level of evidence required to make a decision is higher. It can reduce diagnostic errors.
In Quarantine Situations
Telemedicine has been used in quarantine situations, too. In places where physicians have to deal with highly infectious conditions, doctors can monitor patients through drones and cameras.
Conditions that Telemedicine is Ideal For
When telemedicine is mentioned, people see remote care. Most of the solutions are geared towards patients who have no access to a physician. However, telemedicine is gaining a broad service offering.
Today, from telerehabilitation to telepharmacy, its use has widened dramatically. Anyone who has access to the internet and a transmission device can access a physician through telemedical platforms. Videoconferencing, webcams, and videophones make it accessible to almost anyone out there.
However, one will need reliable internet services to transmit information. You must also utilize quality equipment to capture and reliably transmit data. The physician must have tools and equipment to receive, retrieve and read data. Medical records such as scans are bulky. They require high-resolution equipment to display.
For companies such as Global Med, the limits to care are cast aside by the opportunities brought by telemedicine. They can deliver care to a global village.