If you’re one of the millions of Americans who owns a television or has picked up a newspaper in the last several years, chances are you’ve heard about the issues surrounding American healthcare. Although many try to politicize the issue, there are those working on solutions to actually alleviate problems and work on saving lives. As I’ve mentioned before, telemedicine is one of those answers that could be the future of healthcare, as well as a solution to many of the healthcare system’s ills. But, specifically, exactly how can telemedicine save healthcare?
Preventing Physician Burnout
A relatively novel term, physician burnout is phenomenon sweeping the nation. Essentially, physician burnout means that a doctor is so overworked, they begin to lose the optimism and joy that once made them choose the medical profession as a career. As a result, physicians begin seeing their relationship with patients less as care, and more as a transaction. For the health of the doctor and the patient, this relationship is cancerous. However, telemedicine offers a solution.
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Instead of working 40-80 hour work weeks, telemedicine gives a physician the option to be on-call during the hours most convenient to them. In turn, this also gives the physician leeway to have more control with their freetime, giving them the opportunity for self-care for their body and their mind. Perhaps, most importantly, telemedicine can be conducted from the physician’s home, and the patient’s home. This cuts out commutes for both parties, and gives both parties the comfort and peace of being at home.
Lack of Rural Area Specialist
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On Kevinmd.com, Dr. Duncan stated that “many patients, particularly those in medically underserved areas, lack access to specialty care.” For many areas in America, particularly rural or economically depressed areas, the distance needed to travel for adequate care can be the difference between life or death. With telemedicine, patients can get access to care specialized care with a click-of-a-button, and without driving hundreds of miles. Every American should have access to the healthcare they need, and telemedicine is an efficient solution that can help bridge that gap.
Care in Nursing Homes
Many nursing homes have physicians either on-call, or at the facility during daytime hours. But, what happens if a elderly patient has a complication at night? Most likely, this will result in an ER visit, which is both costly in time and money. Furthermore, many ER visits are unnecessary, and can block care for patients who need help urgently. With telemedicine, a doctor can treat a patient from his home, without the hassle and time needed to travel to the facility. The doctor can make an immediate judgement call through telemedicine, and advise the nursing home’s staff on the appropriate action necessary to treat the patient.
As telemedicine evolves, so will it’s applications and solutions. Keep up with Ehicares to learn more and stay updated on the new world of telemedicine.