Expanding care beyond Telemedicine
While telemedicine may have been accelerated during the peak of COVID, it appears that as the pandemic recedes, some aspects of telemedicine are here to stay. But many practitioners are realizing that telemedicine is not the miraculous panacea that it was often promoted to be. We believe a “hybrid model” is the most viable and effective option for physicians – and below we lay out the rationale for this approach and some suggestions for how physicians can implement this to improve outcomes.
The doctor will see you now – over the screen (sort of)
Doing a physical exam over the screen is very difficult. Experienced clinicians have long ago mastered the physical exam “in the room”, but now we are asking them to do it over a screen. A few of the common challenges we’ve seen are:
- Poor internet connection
- Difficult to hear the patient
- Difficult to evaluate their symptoms
- Inability to gather all the necessary patient vitals at the time of visit – some may be obtained by simple devices patients purchased on their own, but these are very limited and may be inaccurate
And if we can handle the above, then what? As clinicians we manually make a chart entry – but what about imaging and blood work to help minimize missed diagnoses?
Without human contact are we just putting a Band-Aid on a wound that might ultimately require better care to heal? Emotional support – a key requirement to heal patients – is just not there.
These are just a few of the limitations of telemedicine.
Telemedicine devices – a solution?
Recently we’ve been seeing an increase in the use of telemedicine devices. Remote patient monitoring offers real-time information on what the patient is experiencing physiologically in their home. But generalized data alone also can’t substitute for an exam. What do you do with all that data? How does that translate to whether you need to send out a phlebotomist to collect the patient’s blood, schedule another telemedicine visit, or bring the patient into the office? What can you do in real-time to act on real-time data?
TealHeal platform – the next generation solution
At TealHeal we have embraced a hybrid approach that is the “best of both worlds” – the doctor can connect remotely, but we place a trained nurse in the patient’s home with a robust, integrated toolkit of leading-edge diagnostic tools. This creates efficiency for the doctor while ensuring a comprehensive and thorough exam, as well as the psychological benefits of hands-on treatment and personalized care.
Our platform is more than just telemedicine plus medical devices. We built the platform based on delivering the same level of care as an urgent care clinic, but right in the home.
- A nurse brings the platform to the patient, performs the vital exam, consults with a provider via video conference, and performs point of care diagnostic labs and imaging in real-time.
- Results are available in 15 minutes.
- There’s no ordering tests or waiting for a phlebotomist, no repeat exams, or worrying about holding the integrity of the sample.
- Treatment starts immediately, not when the results are available or at a follow-up telemedicine or in-office visit.
- No pretending that you are caring for the patient as if they were in your office – your nurse is right at their side providing that psychological support.
- The data is integrated directly into your EHR along with a comprehensive report that can be sent on for professional consultation
At TealHeal, we bring a new level of technology-enabled house call to the 21st century. Don't stop short of delivering proper patient care by only collecting patient data and then following up to take action. Opt for an all-in-one approach with our platform and deliver the maximum possible level of care. Contact TealHeal today to learn more and get started.