Telemedicine has become tremendously popular since the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Although it has been used for years, it has only recently become mainstream since so many people have access to high-speed internet and the devices necessary to perform a video visit. Many patients prefer televisits, and there are many advantages.
1. More Convenient
Doctors everywhere have a Telemedicine Workstation that allows them to interact with patients who are at home. Having a doctor’s appointment at home or from the office can save a great deal of time. It isn’t necessary to schedule large blocks of time off work or school to get to the doctor when they have an opening. It can be done in the middle of the day, conveniently from wherever you are located. There is no time spent traveling to and from the office. There’s no chance of being late to the appointment because of traffic or being late back to work.
By using telemedicine, patients don’t need to waste hours in a doctor’s waiting room. Even if you don’t choose telehealth, a doctor’s time is used more efficiently when they have some patients making their appointments by video or call. This means less waiting time for all patients.
2. Less Expensive
When a patient visits virtually, they save money on gas, parking, or public transportation. There’s no need to take time off of work, and there’s no need to find and pay for childcare for young children. Also, insurance companies may pay for these visits at a lower rate, which means the visit is less expensive for the patient.
3. Access to Specialists
When a patient is diagnosed with a serious condition or rare disease, they want to see the best specialist around. Sometimes a specialist can be quite a distance away. Instead of having to travel great distances to see a specialist, telemedicine allows patients to be in contact instantly with a video call. Of course, all patients want the best care and the most knowledgeable specialist in their area of care. Being able to remotely visit with a doctor removes many barriers that once prevented this type of care.
4. Less Chance of Catching a New Illness
Crowded waiting rooms in doctor’s offices are prime places to catch a new illness. Everyone does their best to prevent diseases from spreading by wearing masks and social distancing, but sometimes there just isn’t anything that can be done to prevent passing germs.
For people with unhealthy immune systems, this can be particularly dangerous. Staying at home for an appointment eliminates this possibility. Pregnant women and those with chronic conditions also benefit from staying at home rather than risking exposure to new germs.
5. Family Connections
Having appointments via a telehealth appointment will allow important people to be a part of the visit. Sometimes a patient has a family member who wants to be part of the visit to ask questions or provide additional information to the doctor. Telehealth appointments allow anyone to be a part of the appointment, if the patient authorizes it, by looping the family member into the video conference.
Before scheduling an in-office visit, check to see if your provider can schedule a telehealth appointment. It can save time and money and keep you healthy in the process.