Medical science has progressed in leaps and bounds over the past few years, and so have communication technologies. While hospitals and clinics have always been synonymous with the delivery of medicine and clinical care, and new and interesting alternative has emerged which brings about the perfect marriage between these two aforementioned fields of advancements. Telehealth or telemedicine has been around for a while, but it is only of late that the concept has started to catch on. People have woken up to the immense benefits of telehealth technologies and the numerous advantages of telemedicine, and this mode of disbursing medical care is fast finding popularity among the masses.
All About Telehealth
In essence, telehealth is the union of medicine and telecommunications. Practitioners of medicine use advanced telecommunication technologies to diagnose and treat patients from remote locations. Telemedicine has now become more or less standard practice around the world, with many companies dedicating their resources towards the improvement of telehealth technologies and their availability. Software is now available to carry out scheduling, billings and conferencing to facilitate this mode of treatment.
Applications and Implications
Telehealth solutions have myriad applications and implications in the present scenario of medical care. The most apparent advantage is the immense cost savings it brings to the table. The extra expenditure of time and effort on the part of of patients and doctors by way of office visits and wait times can be alleviated. This can boost the availability of low-cost, efficient healthcare even in remote, rural areas.
One field of medicine where the use of telemedicine software can be of particular efficacy is mental health. Telemedicine psychiatry can be effective because it is already a conversation and interaction based form of diagnosis and treatment at play. More than 30% of chronically ill people display symptoms of mental illness. For children, one in every five has been found to fall prey to serious mental disorders. Telehealth technologies can be particularly effective in these cases, providing immediate treatment through the use of modern technologies like conferencing. Telepsychiatry software has also developed significantly, and in a recent study it was seen that success rates are better overall, with patients attending an average of six sessions and over 70% coming back to re-book with the same doctor.
Telemedicine is here to stay, and we can only hope that with time, it gains more prominence as an efficient, convenient and cost-effective form of providing medical care.