TELEHEALTH AND VIRTUAL REALITY IN 2020

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The internet is one of the pivotal tools that has impacted our modern lives. As a tool that enables people, services and products to be interconnected, it is one of the most life changing things that has changed our standard of living. Many of the things that we spent hours doing, are now accomplished at the click of a button. Just to name a few examples: 

  1. Banking transactions: Standing in line at the bank is something that most persons are not thrilled about having to do. With the advent of technologies like telebanking you can now do things like pay bills and order items online from retailers, all from the comfort of your sofa. 
  2. Virtual conferences: With COVID-19 in full effect now, many persons are practicing social distancing. While the physical presence of your friends and family may be missed, with the push of a button you can still see them. 

These are just two examples. With the advent of the COVID-19 virus, there are various enterprises that are practicing social distancing and encouraging tele-facilities of critical services. Telehealth is one of those spheres that is now gaining traction. 

Initially, within the healthcare industry online telehealth access involved websites such as WebMD, that acted like online medical references. Many individuals, predominantly millennials, took to these sites as their sources of information. A website is not a very interactive medium, and as such in the realm of telehealth, a means for communication with real personnel was actually developed. 

With the current healthcare system overwhelmed by an influx of COVID-19 patients, the ideal for the rest of the population involves utilizing more passive mediums for dealing with their medical needs. Telehealth will be the way to have your general primary care needs addressed. While we all practice the art and science of staying at home, it will be in our best interest to take advantage of technology. 

What is telehealth?

Telehealth facilitates the utilization of online communication technologies to facilitate the remote management of your healthcare. The format can vary from online conference calls to the utilization of a mobile app to communicate with your medical team or even to schedule your appointments or medicine intake. 

If you have a medical condition, telehealth can facilitate: 

  1. A health log that notes your critical parameters. You can do things like calculate your calorific intake, heart beat and even your blood pressure. With a connected system, your medical system will be able to track your performance and even inform you if there’s an issue. 
  2. Ordering of your medicines online once they’ve been prescribed. 
  3. Get reminders of when you’ll need certain critical appointments for preventative care. 

Telehealth services ensure that [1]: 

  • Health care is accessible to people who live in rural or isolated communities.
  • Services more readily available or convenient for people with limited mobility, time or transportation options.
  • You have access to medical specialists.
  • You have improved communication and coordination of care among members of a health care team and a patient.
  • Adequate support for self-management of health care.

While the differing services that each telehealth medium provides is different, the intentions to provide you with high quality service are the primary intention. With a little due diligence, you’ll be able to find within your local area, the critical services that will be available to you remotely. Additionally, your health care provider may in some instances be able to provide you with telehealth services,so that you don’t have to go in house. 

Be mindful during this time. It is very important for you to ensure that you are providing the healthcare sector with at least stress as possible. As the curve flattens, we can do our part to facilitate this shift. As a gentle reminder, you can handle the minor health care matters at home for the interim.

Reference Articles: 

Mayo Clinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/consumer-health/in-depth/telehealth/art-20044878

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Dr. Gordon Slater

Dr. Slater is one of the first foot and ankle surgeons in Australia to adopt minimally invasive surgical techniques. He routinely uses MIS to treat a range of conditions, including bunions.

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Dr Gordon Slater is a highly-skilled surgeon specialising in foot and ankle conditions and sports injuries. Dr Slater is one of the first foot and ankle surgeons in Australia to adopt minimally invasive surgical techniques. He routinely uses MIS to treat a range of conditions, including bunions. MIS  has many advantages including shorter operating times, reduced post-operative pain, reduced risk of infection, minimal scarring and better cosmetic outcomes.

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