Companies and individuals have quickly adapted virtual tools to carry out activities that were previously face-to-face. In particular, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought about an increase use of telehealth across inpatient and ambulatory settings. What are the five things you should know about telehealth?
- Telehealth visits are safe because virtual appointments lower the risk of spreading the virus among the general population and their health care teams.
- Telehealth enables those who are vulnerable to the Coronavirus (e.g. elderly or those with compromised immune systems) to continue receiving some medical care safely without the need to travel for office visits.
- Medicare allows payments for telehealth services for beneficiaries, wherever they are, even in their own homes.
- Telehealth visits protect patient’s privacy and personal health information.
- Telehealth is likely here to stay since remote consultations are convenient and supports the very definition of patient-centered care. States and Federal laws will need to adapt post-COVID to ensure the continue smooth delivery of telehealth for both patients and their health care providers.
Expanding access with technology and telehealth use cases.
A short clip from providers in South Carolina talking about telehealth.
- Using Telehealth to Expand Access to Essential Health Services during the COVID-19 PandemicLinks to an external site.
CDC (2020) described the landscape of telehealth services and considerations for healthcare systems, practices, and providers using telehealth services to provide virtual care during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.Telehealth for global emergencies: Implications for COVID-19Links to an external site.
Smith and colleagues (2020) outlined key requirements to ensure that the value of telehealth is fully realized, not only in emergencies (such as pandemics) but also in everyday practice.
Reflect on the videos and readings about telehealth use during a pandemic, and then describe in your own words (a couple of paragraphs) some of the key takeaways from the perspective of both the patient and the provider.
Expert Solution Preview
Telehealth has become increasingly popular during the COVID-19 pandemic, as individuals and healthcare providers have turned to virtual tools to carry out activities that were previously carried out in-person. As a medical professor, it is important to understand the benefits of telehealth for both patients and providers. In this assignment, students are asked to reflect on videos and readings about telehealth use during a pandemic and describe in their own words the key takeaways from the perspective of both the patient and the provider.
Telehealth is a safe alternative to in-person visits that can protect both patients and healthcare providers from contracting the virus. Telehealth visits provide vulnerable individuals who are at a high risk of contracting COVID-19, like the elderly and those with compromised immune systems, with the ability to receive medical care safely without the need to travel for office visits. Moreover, telehealth enables patients to maintain their health care while also reducing the risk of spreading the virus among the general population.
From a provider’s perspective, telehealth allows for a more efficient use of time and resources, resulting in an increase in patient access to care. Providers can perform virtual consultations with patients and adjust care plans as needed. Telehealth can also protect patient privacy and personal health information. However, there is a need for state and federal laws to adapt post-COVID to guarantee the continued smooth delivery of telehealth for both patients and healthcare providers.
In conclusion, telehealth is likely here to stay because it can provide remote consultations that support the very definition of patient-centered care. With the benefits that telehealth offers both patients and healthcare providers, telehealth can provide essential health care services during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.