Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Can you “hear” me now? Telemedicine networks save critical time

Today's blog is written by Layne Shapiro, one of our brand engagement managers.

With new technologies available, how can the healthcare industry improve patient care while maintaining patient confidentiality? Remote access improves efficiencies across many industries, and it’s finally beginning to be implemented in the healthcare industry.

Patient privacy concerns have slowed the healthcare industry from moving to remote access solutions. With the passing of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), the demand for privacy and security of electronic healthcare information has increased. With HIPPA, compliance is not a choice - it’s a requirement. Since remote access can lower costs, raise productivity and improve patient care, there is an increase interest in providing remote access while maintaining patient privacy.

Healthcare professionals frequently require timely access to confidential patient information in order to provide the highest quality care, which in some cases can mean the difference between life and death. With Skype and Google Videochat already offering live-streaming video communication, it only makes sense to use this technology to improve access to healthcare via telemedicine. Now doctors can view patients from anywhere telemedicine is available online instead of staying at the office all hours. Expert specialty physicians practice at specialized centers and have limited accessibility. With the use of live-streaming video and audio communication, access to care will be increased and critical time can be saved improving diagnosis and increasing the frequency of appropriate treatment choice.

Eventually, if telemedicine networks connect with a majority of the specialty physicians it would increase access to care for people through the world. This would allow for preliminary review immediately, even if the patient requires a visit during the night. With increased access to care, the demand for the highest quality of care would increase and we could begin to see outsourcing for initial diagnosis.

1 comment:

Will said...

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