Telemedicine platform

For many patients, access to telemedicine doctors can mean the difference between prompt, knowledgeable care and a long, fruitless wait in the emergency room. Thousands of patients visit emergency rooms each year for non-emergency care simply because their primary care physician was unavailable, or because they don’t have one. Telemedicine video conferencing solutions can help patients get the care they need without straining the resources of overcrowded emergency rooms.

One of the biggest aims of telehealth solutions is to reduce the instances of unnecessary hospital admissions and readmissions by overseeing the patient’s condition through video conferencing and remote monitoring. This is especially important for recently-discharged heart patients and others who are at risk for relapse or complications following surgery.

Telemedicine services don’t just benefit patients at home, of course. Physicians at one institution are able to contact telemedicine doctors at other facilities to ask questions and seek guidance about a patient’s situation, without having to transfer the patient from hospital to hospital unnecessarily. This cuts down on the risk of infection, and allows physicians to treat the patient in a more timely manner.

Both inpatient and outpatient systems can benefit from telemedicine by contacting specialists directly. Instead of going through a complicated chain of appointments, referrals, and transfers, patients are able to consult with appropriate specialists right away. This will reduce the length of the patient’s stay in hospitals, and allow them to receive treatment and begin recovery earlier.

Unfortunately, telemedicine doctors face a few barriers to practicing. Doctors are required to be licensed in each state where they will be practicing medicine. If a patient is on vacation out of state and attempts to use telemedicine to receive treatment from a doctor in their home state, the doctor will have to have a license in the vacation state in order to be able to treat the patient. Other doctors are unused to working on-call hours, and may not be available all times of day and night.

While there are a few kinks in the system that need to be ironed out, telemedicine is sure to continue to benefit doctors and patients as implementation of the system becomes easier and more commonplace.