4 Things That Make the Telemedicine Experience a Good One
The U.S. healthcare system wasn’t ready for full-on telemedicine when the COVID pandemic erupted in early 2020. Still, necessity thrust telemedicine on us. We can now look back and analyze what went right and what went wrong. Hopefully we do that, because making the telemedicine experience a good one is key to driving it forward. And to drive it forward we must. Telemedicine is here to stay, like it or not.
CSI Health has been in the business of designing and building telemedicine technologies since the late 1970s. They know a thing or two about healthcare kiosks and remote diagnostics. The San Antonio, TX company says there are four things that make the telemedicine experience a good one:
1. A Collaborative Environment
Healthcare delivery is ultimately about the provider-patient relationship. That relationship is the foundation of the new outcome-based model of delivery that is trying to replace the old fee-for-service model. And at the heart of that relationship is collaboration.
Today’s patients are no longer interested in being dictated to by their healthcare providers. They want to be active participants in their own healthcare. Telemedicine should promote that by creating a collaborative space that invites participation. Video chat, online patient portals, and real time access to medical records and lab tests are all things that encourage collaboration.
2. Real Time Diagnostics
A typical office visit includes diagnostic services. Nurses check blood pressure, heart rate, body weight, etc. Physicians take diagnostics to the next level by listening to the patient’s lungs, checking reflexes, examining the eyes and ears, and so forth. All of this needs to be accomplished in the telemedicine setting if the experience is to yield maximum results.
CSI Health builds medical kiosks with all the latest diagnostic tools. With the right setup, a doctor can remotely diagnose patients as if they were sitting right in the office. Such capabilities benefit both doctors and patients alike.
3. Comfortable Workflow
The one thing about telemedicine is that it requires a bit more effort from the patient. Ideally, a patient manages their own online account. They pay their bills online, submit lab tests online, and even use a patient portal to make appointments and request prescription refills. Making patients comfortable doing so requires creating a comfortable workflow.
Patient portals need to be intuitive. They need to be easy to use. Patients should not struggle to do what they need to do online. Likewise, the same applies to the doctor’s side of the portal. If the doctor does not experience a comfortable workflow, they are likely to resist telemedicine.
4. Cloud Storage and Security
Finally, telemedicine requires a lot of computing resources for diagnostics, data storage, and communication. The best environment is the cloud environment. Designated cloud environments have all the necessary resources along with the latest security protocols. That is important because healthcare providers cannot afford to compromise on any of it.
Cloud computing wasn’t all that great when it was first introduced. But it has matured over the last two decades. These days, the cloud powers global computing. Most people interact with cloud environments daily and don’t even know it. Needless to say, the cloud is the only environment in which telemedicine truly works well.
More and more healthcare providers are jumping on the telemedicine train. They do not have much choice. If they don’t get on board, they will eventually be left at the station. The key for medical providers is to ensure that their telemedicine environments include the four things described in this post. They are what make the telemedicine experience a good one.