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Applications Of Telehealth In The Provision Of Healthcare Services

By Ruth Hill

The world today relies heavily on Technology and rightly so. Technology has made many things a lot easier than was the case previously. The provision of healthcare is no exception. Technology has been incorporated in many aspects of providing preventive and curative health services which has served to improve efficiency in a remarkable manner. This is what has given rise to the concept of telehealth.

One of the major factors that have driven healthcare in this direction is the advancement that has been seen in the technology field. Movement of information is now seamless thanks to the internet and the telephone. By taking advantage of this, doctors and patients have found it a lot easier to exchange information. Better drugs have been developed and many of them can be tolerated by a patient at home hence no need for hospital admissions.

The management of chronic conditions is perhaps one area that has benefited the most after a significant number of physicians adopted the technology. Persons suffering from conditions such as heart failure, asthma, hypertension and diabetes often have to make regular trips to their physicians for check up and continuation or change of medication. This is both exhausting and expensive. This technology has made it possible to do all this remotely.

With this platform, doctor to doctor consultation is now a lot easier. It is possible to now get expert opinions on various challenging cases in a matter of minutes or hours even when such experts are in different geographical locations. In fact, through teleconferencing, several doctors can deliberate through a case as though they are in the same board room yet they could be hundreds if not thousands of miles apart.

The service has created a platform for collaboration between different providers. This is an important aspect of patient treatment especially when one considers the rare conditions that require wide consultation and expert opinion. Doctors are now able to share and discuss challenging cases with colleagues so as to get the best possible solutions for their patients. Logistical challenges experienced previously have been eliminated.

Disruptions within any industry are usually associated with some form of resistance. The same was observed in the healthcare space with the advent of this technology. Part of the resistance was by older doctors who found it difficult to adjust from face to face consultations to those built around computer software. There was unfounded fear of losing jobs to computers.

Many patients have readily accepted the new way of doing things but some still have reservations. One of the causes for concern is their own privacy. Reassurances have centred around restrictions in access to private patient information. Only authorized healthcare professionals have accounts with accompanying user names and passwords. Moreover, information can only be extracted or shared with the consent of the patient.

The use of technology in medicine is here to stay. The advantages have significantly outweighed the downsides and many people are coming on board. It appears as though most people will have most of their health needs addressed just at the touch of a button. Of course, this is with the exception of surgical interventions which require direct contact with the doctor.

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Applications Of Telehealth In The Provision Of Healthcare Services


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