The days of calling your doctor for a visit to your home are long gone, but there is a new type of house visit on the horizon. Just imagine it is a virtual house call. The doctor comes into your home over an IP connection, and the appointment is done via video chat.
Thanks to video conferencing, a new age of health care is on the horizon. Patients will now be able to employ services of a specialist located hundreds of miles away to get the best treatment regardless of geographic limitations.
Treating patients remotely is an increasingly important trend in the medical industry, and quite frankly, it makes a whole lot of sense for both patient and practitioner. It saves money on travel, it saves time and it saves resources.
Doctors are able to monitor their patients from anywhere—checking up and collecting information—and the patients don’t have to commute to the office and endure what can sometimes be brutal wait times.
In addition to the benefits of video conferencing from a doctor-patient perspective, the technology also offers benefits amongst health care professionals. If the world’s best specialist for a rare disease practices out of New York, but a patient is in critical condition in at a hospital in Chicago, the doctor in Chicago can enlist the services of the specialist in New York by picking his or her brain over a video conference.
In this same way, lectures can be delivered in one hospital and broadcasted in hospitals across the country to countless doctors and nurses. Training improves, and a greater number of patients, regardless of location, can have access to the most innovative treatments.
The Association of American Medical Colleges predicts that by 2025, there will be a shortage of more than 130,000 doctors in America because the population is aging and the Affordable Health Care Act increased the demand for medical coverage. To help equalize the market, will doctors begin harnessing video conferencing technology for regular check-ups? We think so.
Come to think of it, that wouldn’t be much different than the house calls of past generations.
By: Sarah Brown