The field of telemedicine emerged in the 20th century when the means of telecommunication became common in each and every household. Doctors could finally assist patients in remote areas increasing their access to quality health care. Telemedicine is of incredible importance in areas where there is an evident lack of health care professionals.
In a State like Texas where there is a chronic shortage of doctors, this field can make a huge difference. There are about 35 countries in Texas with a population of 115000 without any access to physicians. About 1.8 million people have no access to an obstetrician-gynecologist.
To fulfill the remote medical needs of patients, Texas has finally opened doors to telemedicine. For quite some time, the Texan government had restricted access to telemedicine for only those patients who have visited the doctor in person at least once. This rule was almost a death sentence to people living in the rural areas. Getting to a clinic or hospital even once was difficult for several people. This requirement has now been waived in the law recently passed in Texas regarding telemedicine. Among other significant additions, the waiver of the visit clause has brought a new wave of hope for a healthy lifestyle for Texans.
This new telemedicine facility includes a variety of features such as:
1. A Virtual Visit
The first time a patient connects to their telemedicine provider, it should be in the form of a virtual visit. That simply means that only a telephonic conversation does not suffice. There should be video conferencing where the doctor and patient can communicate in real-time.
The patient must forward their lab results, or any other reports associated with their condition to the doctor. In the absence of physical examination, the doctor would be able to give an accurate diagnosis based on history taking and previous reports and lab results.
2. Provision of Immediate Care
A telemedicine provider would be able to give suitable consultation in cases of immediate care needs. Paramedics would take a few minutes to reach the patient during which there is danger of fatality. Through telemedicine, medical help can stabilize the patient until emergency medical services reach them.
3. Monitoring the Patient
Patients suffering from chronic diseases can be monitored using telemedicine. Their vitals can be measured using mobile medical devices.
4. The Service of Store and Forward
Telemedicine caregivers can share the patients’ reports and lab results with their primary doctors. In fact they can also share their own diagnosis with the primary consultants of the patient. This is known as the store and forward feature of telemedicine.
Remote medical needs of patients in Texas pushed the government to take a wise decision and make telemedicine more accessible. Want to know how you can avail these services? Visit our website and to find out!