What Telemedicine Means for Paediatric Healthcare
Telemedicine is the new normal in the context of the CoVid-19 pandemic. More and more people prefer staying within the confines of their homes in an effort to safeguard their health – including new parents or parents of younger children. Since new-borns and young children tend to be susceptible to disease, it makes sense to turn to telemedicine for pediatric patients.
Telemedicine works in conjunction with your pediatrician to ensure that your child gets the healthcare they need in continuity. While telehealth does not replace visits to your pediatrician entirely, they supplement them, enhancing the physical and mental health of your child.
Can Telehealth Technologies Improve Paediatric Care?
There is a range of benefits that come with a virtual pediatric care solution. These include:
- Care calls within the comfort of the patient’s homes
- Faster healthcare
- Lesser health risks
- Addresses geographical health care inequalities
- Saving time
- Higher quality of care
The various benefits of telemedicine for pediatric patients have been discussed in further detail below.
1. Care Calls
Telemedicine allows your clinic to offer quick diagnoses and treatment via smartphones, laptops, and computers. By using the video call and chat features, through any platform of your choice, from Zoom to Microsoft teams, pediatricians can address any concerns parents may have through virtual visits.
In addition, doctors can adhere to far more flexible schedules, creating timetables suited to their availability. They can also effectively monetize after-hours care calls. In addition, with telehealth, pediatric healthcare providers can also streamline non-emergency appointments through new communication channels and quick clinical scheduling.
2. Faster Care
The modern family is always on the go. In the midst of busy lives, scheduling doctor’s appointments mean taking prior stock of schedules and factoring in the time spent planning and traveling to the practice.
Often, appointments are missed because of unforeseen circumstances. Telehealth addresses all of these problems, as clinics can provide swift virtual pediatric care according to the availability of parents without them having to adjust their day around an in-person visit.
This healthcare option quickens the recovery process for many patients and creates a sense of mental peace for parents as well.
3. Lower health risk
With the onset of the pandemic, in-house clinic visits for general checkups have become not only risky but also challenging to plan. Often, only one guardian is allowed, and there are limited time slots for visits. Parents also feel hesitant to subject their children to potential exposure via an in-person visit.
Thus, by offering telehealth services, you can address these concerns and cut back on health risks. Parents of patients that want primary and essential care services and checkups can be at ease mentally while having their concerns addressed by a professional.
4. Healthcare Inequalities
There are many underserved regions in the U.S, given the disparity in the distribution of pediatric physicians, according to the American Academy of Paediatrics. Telehealth helps in addressing the workforce shortage. Places that are underserved include communities mainly based in rural regions but also include some suburban settings. This disparity causes differential access, leading to severe inequalities in health care.
Such inequality leads to differences in health outcomes not only between rural and urban populations but also children with special health care needs. Since the internet transcends geographical boundaries, virtual visits can help address this disparity and improve healthcare all around.
5. Saving Time
In-house clinic visits can be overwhelming. Moreover, setting them up for minor concerns can be inconvenient for you and your provider. Telemedicine virtual visits are usually short and sweet, ranging from ten to fifteen minutes. They also require no travel time or additional waiting at the clinic.
This allows the provider to schedule more appointments during the day, treating more patients in the same amount of time. Furthermore, the patient saves a significant amount of time, creating more time during the day.
6. Improving Paediatric Care with Telehealth: Higher Quality Care
Contrary to popular belief, the quality of care is not detrimentally impacted by going digital. Since healthcare becomes much more accessible for patients and their parents, it actually goes up. Telemedicine reduces the likelihood of missed appointments, enhances adherence to set treatment plans and therapies, and maintains the appropriate frequency of visits to the doctor. Continuity in care will go up, creating better results overall.
In addition, the technologies will enhance the frequency and quality of communication between pediatricians and patients. This could improve disease management on a large scale. Moreover, virtual visits may also create a safer space for younger patients and their parents. Since they are held within the comfort of home, patients and parents may feel much more at ease as compared to a clinic environment.
Dr. Josh is a physician who's helping spread the knowledge about Telehealth and its advantages. At SmartClinix, he's providing his expertise and knowledge in the form of engaging articles on various health & tech related topics.