Getting Ahead of COVID-19 While Providing Care Remotely And Staying Safe

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COVID-19 virus is wreaking havoc with the healthcare systems around the world. Healthcare practitioners and staff members are on double work shifts to take care of the growing number of coronavirus patients. The situation is putting them at risk of exposure to the virus as well. Amidst these chaotic circumstances, regular patients also require medical help due to chronic illnesses but many healthcare staff and resources are focused on providing care to the virus patients first. Also, it is harmful to regular patients to visit the hospital for routine appointments as they could get exposed to the virus too.

This is why telemedicine is stepping into the spotlight and aiding healthcare providers to better respond to the needs of patients who have contracted the virus and patients who need to touch base with their providers on a regular basis. Telemedicine is making a significant contribution to healthcare right now. It is being used in a number of ways to stay ahead of it and to deliver care remotely during COVID-19. While telehealth technologies have limitations when it comes to treating patients, there are numerous benefits that hospitals experience with its adaptation.

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How Telemedicine Is Proving Useful During the Pandemic

Telehealth is emerging as an efficient, effective, and sustainable solution for precaution, prevention, and treatment in order to end the spread of the global pandemic. It is helping bridge the gap between physicians, healthcare systems, and the people as it is enabling them to stay at home safely. The patients can communicate with healthcare providers through virtual channels. The whole setting is helping in reducing the spread of the virus to masses and medical staff working on the frontlines. Hospitals are adopting telehealth to touch base and treat the infected patients in quarantine.

Telehealth solutions like Hucu.ai can be used effectively by medical staff for non-urgent communication to take the pressure off of clinics and emergency rooms. By deploying telehealth solutions like Hucu.ai, people suffering from non-fatal illnesses can receive care from home without them entering hospitals, and this way they can minimize the risk of contracting the virus.

Hucu.ai is a HIPAA compliant free texting application that allows healthcare providers to communicate remotely among themselves or with patients and their families. The app is designed to offer an effective solution to the glaring problem in healthcare: lack of timely patient-centered treatment and instant communication. Different ‘channels’ in the application work as different ‘rooms’ that healthcare providers can divide into different categories. Patient data can be instantly shared in a safe HIPAA compliant environment that protects patient confidentiality. Such telehealth solutions can reduce significant administrative costs and time spent on manual tasks like photocopying patient’s data to fax.

Telemedicine Is Reducing Exposure Risk to Healthcare Workers

The primary care physicians are working day and night in the frontlines. Using telehealth solutions, patients can be divided into at-risk and not-at-risk factions. This helps the hospitals to take appropriate measures to reduce the risks to healthcare workers and patients and allows them to take the right action for patients who have been scanned already. It saves their precious time and minimizes risks of virus transmission to everybody else. Chronic patients can easily schedule teleconsultations from the safety of their homes to avoid in-person visits and possible exposure to COVID-19. Hucu.ai offers Zoom meeting feature so that patients or healthcare workers can video conference at any given time.

Through such remote care solutions, appointments can be scheduled online and later chronic medicine can be delivered to the patient’s doorstep. Doctors can follow up with patients who have a mild acute respiratory infection, on a daily basis to keep a close check. If there are any changes in their clinical state, appropriate actions can be taken right away. Telemedicine offers 24/7 lifeline for patients to communicate with their healthcare providers. It will offer them great comfort and assurance during these testing times.

Telehealth is Surging

Telemedicine tech companies have reported that healthcare is witnessing a surge in direct-to-customer telemedicine providers functioning at a large scale, and helping to offer care to patients who might be thinking if they need care after experiencing potential symptoms of the coronavirus. This is the leading cause of an increase in on-demand acute care via telemedicine. This includes ICU programs offering intensive care for critical patients. It is also true that tele-triage is exploding in terms of the number of use-cases that involve deciding whether a patient in the emergency department needs to be given a bed or could they be seen in another spot at the hospital to keep the patients safe from potential exposure.

It also helps to limit healthcare workers’ exposure to the coronavirus. As we know, if a hospital staff member is exposed without protection, they need to go into quarantine for 14 days. Using telemedicine for tele-triage is allowing hospital workers to stay in a low-risk category for infection by completely removing them from exposure.

However, policymakers and healthcare providers are just beginning to recognize the value and importance of telehealth solutions. There are three major roles that telehealth technologies are playing during the current crisis:

  • They are helping in screening patients remotely instead of them visiting the hospital and triage patients with cold flu-like symptoms. They offer remote care for those who don’t require medical intervention and can stay at home.
  •  They are enabling routine remote care for patients with chronic illnesses and are at high risk in case of infection.
  • They can help those healthcare providers who have been infected and in quarantine to care for their patients even when they are physically unavailable at the time when they are needed the most. It allows them to work remotely to monitor patients.

Telemedicine is helping keep the infected individuals out of hospitals and doctors’ offices and as a result healthcare systems can reduce the risk of transmission to other healthcare staff and patients.

Telemedicine Is Reducing the Burden on Hospitals

It is worth noting that telemedicine is reducing the burden on hospitals as they are dealing with the pandemic and the increasing caseload. Hospitals have different capacities for deploying telemedicine but those that are able to offer remote healthcare services can see the benefits. Even using a simple online waiting room feature can keep patients from piling up in close proximity physically, had they been coming to visit the hospital for an appointment.

Telemedicine is the need of the hour and it is helping hospitals stay ahead of COVID-19. It is helping flatten the curve and alleviating the overall load on all hospitals while enabling remote care. Safely!

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