Coronavirus (COVID-19) is an invisible enemy that continues to have both politicians and medical professionals across the globe extremely concerned. The virus can be fatal, how can medical practices protect their staff and patients from infection?
Telehealth is the answer
Telehealth or Video Consultations are proving to be a valuable tool for providers, especially as the flu season rapidly approaches and a spike in patient volumes is expected. The symptoms of Coronavirus are cough, fever and body aches which are very similar to the common cold and flu. Some patients are becoming increasingly concerned if these indicators appear and are visiting their doctor.
Video Consultations are typically conducted by computer or smart phone, the doctor and patient can see one another, while the patient is in the comfort of their home. There is no risk of infection to the doctor, practice staff or other patients. It’s also faster and more efficient for the doctor which means a larger volume of patients can be seen.
Since there is no vaccine currently available for coronavirus the Australian Government advises the best way to prevent infection is to avoid exposure. Telehealth or video consultations will reduce the spread of infection by keeping sick people at home, which will eliminate the risk for healthcare providers and other patients.
During a video consultation if Coronavirus is suspected based on symptoms and travel history the doctor can organise testing and of course quarantine suspected patients which will minimize risk of spreading the virus further.
The Australian Government has now released a range of Medicare item numbers to cover Telehealth consultations.
There is little debate on the seriousness of Coronavirus and controlling the spread of this deadly virus is the best line of defence particularly as there is no vaccine currently. Telehealth represents a low risk option for patients and doctors to provide the care sick people need, without the risk of exposure.
Medtech provides a powerful Telehealth solution, if you would like to know more please click here to visit the Telehealth page.