Tag Archives: doctor appointment

Telemedicine for Minor Immediate Issues

Did you ever have to spend all day in pursuit of a last minute doctor’s appointment or emergency care just for a simple complaint that was easily rectified? We’ve all been there. But luckily, there is a quicker and easy one-word answer to these small health inquiries – telemedicine!

While telemedicine is great for helping control chronic conditions like arthritis as well as to diagnose and treat most common medical issues (up to 78% of complaints, according to the AMA), telemedicine especially excels when it comes to quick problems.

When we say “quick problems” we are talking about such one-time ailments as:
•    Sunburn or small minor burns
•    Uncontrolled dandruff
•    Quick medical questions (such as medication interactions)
•    Heartburn or diarrhea
•    Skin infection
•    Yeast or urinary tract infection
•    Sore throat or cough
•    Rash
•    Conjunctivitis
•    Suspicious bug bite
•    Fever

Basically, we’re talking about problems that may be easily fixed with an antibiotic prescription or special pharmacological cream. It is one thing to spend hours waiting for a same-day appointment or emergency care for something serious and complex, but isn’t life too short to waste precious time, money and patience on appointments for things that can be easily handled in the comfort of your living room?

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Why is Patient Engagement Important for Doctors?

Patient engagement is a broad term used to define patient involvement, their level of health-related knowledge, and the quality of doctor-patient communication. Even the tools used to facilitate doctor-patient communication such as online health portals and social media are often included in this definition.

Patient engagement implies that doctors adopt a patient-focused approach in their medical practices and research. From the point of view of patients, it requires that they take their doctor’s advice to heart and take a health-first approach.

The Most Important Benefits of Better Patient Engagement

1. Easier and Quicker Communication

Patient engagement involves improving communication channels; this makes it easier for doctors and patients to interact. Modern tools and technology can help achieve this goal in very cost-effective ways.

The use of social media as a patient information portal is effective and easy to set up. These methods scale up efficiently and their use should be integrated into the health care system.

2. Increased Patient Loyalty

Patients who are more engaged with their health-care provider remain more loyal and take their health issues more seriously. They will remain loyal to the practice and the doctor.

3. Efficient and Transparent Workflows

Hospitals handle a lot of paperwork; various forms have to be filled out at all stages due to various laws requiring accurate documentation. The use of online portals can lessen some of this burden – patients can pre-fill forms and help shorten the visit duration.

Online systems make it possible to pinpoint issues in workflows; solving these issues will lessen costs.

4. Dissemination of Accurate Health Information

Doctors can help the patient remain better informed by encouraging them to keep and provide timely, accurate and clear information about health issues. Better patient engagement leads to better informed communities.

5. Encourages Better Research

Increased patient involvement will result in a more honest, detailed feedback; this will help make health care data more accurate over time, thereby helping determine future research efforts. The research also becomes more valuable because it has kept patient collaboration and inclusiveness at its core.

6. Increased ROI

Healthcare facilities will have less need of spending money on ads and other promotional activities. Patients will be loyal and keep coming back to the facility because they feel more empowered.
Recent Developments- The Benefits of Moving Towards a Patient-Centric Approach
The USFDA (Food and Drug Administration) realized the importance of having highly engaged patients and recently announced a formation of a Patient Engagement Advisory Committee.
This is a major move that will help improve, modernize, and personalize healthcare. The purpose of the committee is to increase patient involvement at all levels of health care provision, even in issues such as device development and assessment.