Telemedicine is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as “healing from a distance.” It is the use of telecommunications and information technologies to provide patients with remote clinical services. In this article, we will see what is telemedicine and it is used by physicians to transmit digital imaging, video consultations, and remote medical diagnosis. Individuals no longer need to make an in-person appointment with a doctor to receive treatment. Specialists can treat patients who live in areas with limited access to care by using secure video and audio connections.
Here are 5 things to know about what is Telemedicine solution.
1. History of Telemedicine
Telemedicine, contrary to popular belief, is not a new practice. Indeed, the concept of telemedicine dates back to the nineteenth century! What began as a few hospitals wishing to reach patients in outlying areas has evolved into an integrative system spanning the entire care continuum. The history of telemedicine will reveal what is telemedicine, and how we arrived at where we are now. Telemedicine was born with the advent of the telecommunications infrastructure, which included the telegraph, telephone, and radio.
During the Civil War, the telegraph was used to report casualties and injuries, as well as order medical supplies and consultations. This is regarded as one of the earliest applications of telemedicine technology. A Lancet report from 1879 discussed how using the telephone could reduce the number of unnecessary office visits. This was just the beginning of a patient care transformation.
Dr Hugo Gernsback featured the teledactyl in a science magazine in 1922. Gernsback predicted that this sensory feedback device would allow doctors to see their patients on a television screen and touch them with robot arms from a distance. By 1948, the first radiologic images were sent over the phone between two medical staff members at two different health centres in Pennsylvania. The healthcare facilities were 24 miles apart! Then, in 1959, physicians at the University of Nebraska used two-way interactive television to transmit neurological examinations across campus to medical students. Five years later, a closed-circuit television link was built, allowing physicians at Norfolk State Hospital 112 miles away to provide psychiatric consultations.
2. How It Works
What is telemedicine practised in a variety of ways? The most basic is a simple video call (as you would with family and friends), but most countries require a secure HIPAA-compliant video conference tool, so telemedicine companies like VSee provide this type of secure and simple-to-use solution for providers. Some telemedicine is also performed using portable telemedicine kits, which include a computer and mobile medical devices such as ECGs or vital signs monitors.
Physicians can also use high-resolution digital cameras to send detailed medical images to specialists. Finally, robust telemedicine software allows for everything from data storage to live video conferencing. Today, there is a wide range of innovative telemedicine equipment available to meet the various needs of patients.
3. Types of Telemedicine Services
The types of telemedicine services include;
- Interactive Medicine
Interactive medicine, also known as “live telemedicine”, allows patients and physicians to communicate in real-time while also maintaining HIPAA compliance. Communication methods include both phone consultations and video conferences. Physicians can assess a patient’s medical history, perform psychiatric evaluations, and more using interactive medicine.
- Store And Forward
This type of telemedicine allows providers to share patient information with other practitioners. A primary care physician, for example, can now share patient records and medical data with a specialist without having to be in the same room. Systems can transmit data across vast distances and between systems (at times), allowing one physician to know what another has already done. This results in fewer instances of duplicate testing and poor medication management.
- Remote Patient Monitoring
Telemedicine, which is likely to be popular among patients who are ageing in place, allows providers to monitor their patients in their own homes. A physician can gather and share information with their patient using patient portals. Furthermore, medical devices can transmit vital signs and other data to providers, allowing them to make care adjustments as needed.
4. Telemedicine Is Effective In Chronic Disease Management
Physicians can now monitor their patient’s health over long distances using high-tech medical devices. Through the transmission of data from one device to another, touchscreen technology allows providers to access heart rate, blood pressure, glucose levels, and other information. Leading telemedicine companies, such as VSee, help healthcare organisations treat patients with chronic diseases.
They recognise that heart disease, cancer, and diabetes account for 75% of all healthcare spending in the United States. As a result, they’ve developed telemedicine solutions that can keep doctors up to date from the hospital to their homes. Furthermore, the patient, family members, and other healthcare professionals can all participate in the patient care process. Today, when readings fall out of range, a physician can intervene in real-time, which leads to better health outcomes.
5. Telemedicine Is Crucial In Disaster Relief
When a disaster strikes, local healthcare resources are quickly mobilised to provide both emergent and non-emergent care. This usually leads to a shortage because the demand for services exceeds what can be supplied. What is telemedicine that allows physicians in other locations to assist patients by conducting video visits? In fact, during Hurricane Harvey in 2017, healthcare professionals made emergency and behavioural health video visits. This enabled practitioners to concentrate on high-demand, complex cases in person rather than low-level cases that could be managed remotely.
Telemedicine does not preclude you from ever visiting a doctor’s office again. However, in some cases, it makes care more accessible and affordable. Furthermore, it can significantly reduce the amount of time you spend in your doctor’s waiting room.