Mayo Clinic is happy to offer telemedicine as an option for patients interested in seeking care. Modern technology provides a virtual platform for health care providers and patients to initiate partnership in care in a secure, safe and convenient way.
Tele-dentistry allows patients to consult a licensed dentist via a mobile app, without having to leave their home or make an appointment. By sharing high-resolution photos of their teeth and flagging specific concerns, they can get a personalized assessment and practical advice for ongoing improvement of their oral health.
What is Teledentistry?
Teledental health is a very broad category of solutions that service patients oral health at a distance by doing it remotely. People who do not have a dentist, lack access to a dentist or live far from a dental office can be helped with this level of care – via telephone or videoconferencing capability or other means mentioned above. It’s the idea that these technologies can be leveraged to improve access to care, gather and exchange information with a licensed dentist, to provide and support dental care delivery, diagnosis, consultation, treatment, transfer of dental information and education.
Telemedicine refers to the “virtual visits” that take place between patients and clinicians via communications technology — the video and audio connectivity that allows “virtual” meetings to occur in real time, from virtually any location.
A teledental visit can be a videoconference between a dentist and a patient regarding an urgent dental or oral health problem, and it can also give patients improved access to information about the importance of oral health.
With evolving technology, urgent oral or dental issues can be remediated – helping people to avoid expensive, time-consuming visits to the hospital Emergency Room or urgent care clinic by scheduling them at a dental care facility the next day.
The new eCornell course, which features a curriculum in-line with the Association of American Medical College’s Telehealth Competencies, offers instruction on how to harness the digital health medium to effectively create a therapeutic patient-provider encounter. Students learn essentials including verbal and nonverbal communication strategies to convey empathy and compassion, how to overcome technical challenges, and how to conduct remote patient exams.
Digital health and the tools for patients to virtually reach their health care providers have quickly become a mainstay of medical care during the COVID-19 pandemic. Weill Cornell Medicine’s Center for Virtual Care is positioned at the leading edge of this health care delivery transformation. Leveraging their years of experience with video visits, the center’s experts train providers how to best use it to give their patients comprehensive, compassionate care.
DR. C Comments
Telehealth offers significant advantages to both patient and doctor. It should be a welcome and valuable addition to the medical profession in its desire to deliver comprehensive care to patients. However, Telemedicine faces a number of barriers both from the medical side and the patient side, not to mention insurance, lawyers, and government.
A good video was posted from Cornell, which aims to get doctors to develop a set of behavioral skills which will make telemedicine more personal. Of course, training should be extended to peripheral sensing devices that will enhance the ability of doctors to gain information at a distance, as well as familiarization with a user-friendly electronic system to navigate.
Patients also need a special course in how to become more Competent in the technical aspects of telemedicine, sensors and other challenges. Since Telemedicine visits occur at widely spaced intervals, even an intensive training course might find the patient unfamiliar with the system at the time of need.
Recently, I signed up for a zoom consultation At UCLA medical Center. It was very helpful to have a knowledgeable person on the phone directing me through the maze that got me signed up to “my chart”, The electronic system that UCLA uses. Even though I took Notes, when it is actually time to get into the system and go to the virtual waiting room of my chart, I may well have difficulty.
And that’s just one system. It seems as though doctors offices, different medical systems, and different health plans all have their own unique electronic systems which are enough different to be confusing to the patient.
I can only hope that the newer generations, having grown up using these electronic devices, will have enough facility to easily interface with their doctor electronically. Until the older generation passes on, however, there will be ongoing challenges.
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Join CNET during CES 2021 for talks with three medical luminaries to discuss what we’ve gained — and need to fix — with telehealth over a turbulent pandemic year.
Technology has made it possible for people to virtually access their healthcare providers. During COVID-19, this has enabled patients and doctors to avoid excess exposure and travel for non-emergency visits. However, state and local regulations frequently limit or ban telemedicine for health and safety reasons. Should telemedicine be considered as the same or different from traditional office visits, and what regulations should govern it? Anastasia P. Boden is an attorney at the Pacific Legal Foundation.
DR. C REVIEWS MAJOR HEALTH AND TELEMEDICAL NEWS FOR THE WEEK ENDING DECEMBER 13, 2020.