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From sports events to family gatherings, COVID-19 has derailed countless plans. In order to keep the world running while limiting the spread of coronavirus, many businesses and individuals have turned to technology for solutions.
Delivery services, virtual classrooms and video call hangouts are becoming the norm nowadays, so it's perfectly natural that medicine should have a non-contact option for doctors and patients alike.
Telehealth, also known as telemedicine, presents an opportunity for health care providers and individuals like yourself to stay in touch and address routine health issues. Read on to learn why you should choose a telehealth consultation over a face-to-face appointment in these uncertain times.
What is telehealth?
Long an essential way for doctors to connect with remote or underserviced communities, especially in rural areas, telehealth is the use of technology to allow individuals to have appointments with a health care professional remotely.
In the past, these calls were usually conducted via telephone but, with the advent of reliable video chatting technology from companies like Zoom, WhatsApp and Skype, many consultations have moved online.
Patients are now able to book a telehealth consult and attend an appointment without leaving the comfort of their own homes. This unique model is ideal for conditions that are not urgent and do not require physical contact. Some typical services that can be done via telehealth consultations include the following:
- Therapy and mental health services
- Dermatology appointments for rashes and other skin conditions
- Ophthalmologist eye exams
- Routine follow-ups, such as after a surgery
- Routine checkups for chronic conditions such as diabetes
- Diagnosing minor maladies such as the common cold
- Prescription refills
- The benefits of telehealth
Having long proved useful for remote communities around the world, telehealth offers a number of advantages over face-to-face medical services during the COVID-19 era.
1. Adherence to social distancing measures
While healthcare professionals are doing all that they can to reduce the risk of transmission during appointments, the safest option for routine health checks is to avoid meeting face-to-face. Telemedicine lets patients see doctors without any contact or risk of infection, protecting both parties involved.
Initially, accessibility was the core raison d'etre for telehealth as it provided valuable medical services for communities and individuals that might not otherwise be able to access them. Since the beginning of the pandemic, telehealth services have been expanded to serve the whole country and a much wider range of patients.
Telehealth consultations are ideal for individuals living significant distances from the nearest health care professional or facility, as well as individuals with chronic conditions or impairments to their mobility. Similarly, as doctors are essential services, telehealth helps them remain accessible even during lockdown conditions. This means that everyone can access the sort of health professional they need 24/7, regardless of where they are living.
In comparison to going to a doctor's office and scheduling an appointment in person, setting up a telehealth consultation is a piece of cake. The process occurs online or via telephone, and so requires no waiting in line.
There is generally little to no wait to schedule the appointment, and you needn't travel or come into risky contact with others to do so. Similarly, the consultation itself requires no commuting time, making it much easier for those with heavy workloads to fit appointments into their busy schedule.
Furthermore, patients generally prefer telehealth consultations to face-to-face appointments for routine checkups, when they are available, and they may help motivate even the busiest of patients to pay closer attention to their day-to-day health.
In addition to the costs saved on transportation, telehealth consultations are generally cheaper than face-to-face options. Additionally, they tend to be more time efficient and will have you in and out in a minimum of time.
Telehealth consultations are typically held via a browser- or application-based program. Laws protecting patients hold telehealth providers to the highest standard to ensure patients have the utmost privacy.
Healthcare professionals will opt for a secure, end-to-end encrypted option to make sure that your consultation is private and your health information is protected.
A Smart, Modern-Day Solution
While COVID-19 has put plenty of things on hold, your health should not be one of them! Fortunately, telehealth consultations offer convenience, quality and accessibility, all while adhering to even the strictest anti-COVID measures. By seeking out a high-quality telehealth service provider, you can keep you and your loved ones safe and healthy in these uncertain times.
This is sponsored content for myhealth1st.