Primary Medical Care Center has been dedicated to assisting patients through the COVID-19 pandemic and tending to their healthcare needs. We know it was difficult for many people to stay at home during the height of the pandemic. However, we found a way to continue treating their emotional, physical and mental healthcare needs without requiring them to leave their homes.
Our medical team has introduced the telehealth visit tool into our facility. This tool gives patients a chance to stay in touch with our doctors without leaving their homes. Since in-person visits during the pandemic were not possible, the telehealth tool offered patients an easier and faster way to get help without risking exposure to other people.
The coronavirus has not gone away yet, but many of the previous social restrictions have now been lifted. That means people are free to visit doctors at their offices like before. But do they really want to do that?
Telehealth is the Future
Telehealth has grown popular amongst patients and medical facilities. There are advantages for both parties to use telehealth medical services because they are cheaper and more effective in some cases. In fact, telehealth can be a vital part of a value-based healthcare model, especially for someone suffering from COVID-19 or another deadly disease.
What makes telehealth so great? Well, it’s all about building a strong, trusting relationship between the doctor and patient. If you were to visit a doctor operating under the fee-based model, you wouldn’t be able to build a trusting relationship. The reason is that doctors make more money in a fee-based model when patients are not cured. So, they will only treat your symptoms rather than address the actual cause of the problem.
Telehealth sessions give doctors more time to speak with patients because they can fit more patients into their schedules from home. Patients also don’t have to wait long for an appointment either. But the best part is that the doctor and patient will actually talk to each other for longer than a few minutes. It gives them a chance to develop a friendly relationship where the patient will start to trust the doctor. That is what you’ll want to happen.
Patients will usually attend more telehealth sessions than physical office sessions. More sessions mean more time spent with the doctor and developing more trust. You will understand that better after the first couple of telehealth visits with a doctor.
Overcoming Potential Challenges
Telehealth is not without some setbacks and challenges. Perhaps one of the most common issues with telehealth tools is technical difficulties. There will be times when the telehealth software glitches or malfunctions, causing the video feed to freeze or disconnect. These issues could interfere with a vital telehealth session with a patient.
Fortunately, we have a backup plan when technical problems happen during our telehealth sessions with patients. For example, suppose you are in the middle of a videoconference call with a doctor and get disconnected. In that case, we can either call you on the telephone or use another video conferencing software platform. As you can see, there is always a way to resolve these technical issues and continue with the telehealth session.
Another telehealth challenge is for older patients with little to no technical experience. Since many of our patients are senior citizens, we come across this problem all the time. Many patients over 70 years old have trouble figuring out how to use the video conferencing software. If you or a loved one is in this situation, we advise you to practice using the software beforehand. Perhaps you could video call a friend or family member to become more familiar with operating the software.
The final challenges facing telehealth are the legal hurdles and insurance policies regarding this service. Some insurance companies don’t provide coverage for telehealth sessions, so make sure you read the details of your insurance policy before booking your appointment.
Primary Medical Care Center provides a list of instructions to patients before their telehealth session with our doctors. These instructions provide patients with instructions on using the software and checking their current video and audio capabilities. After all, you need to have the correct computer specifications to run the software. But if you purchased your computer within the last five years, it should be okay to use.
Okay, so what about blood pressure and heart rate checks? Obviously, a doctor cannot check your blood pressure or temperature through the computer. So, you will either have to test them yourself or make one visit to our office for a physical examination. We recommend visiting our office at least once per year for annual glucose, blood pressure, and temperature checks. After that, you can go back to the telehealth sessions with our doctor.
Call us at 305-751-1500 to learn more about our telehealth services in South Florida.