As the healthcare sector looks at practical ways to deliver care, while simultaneously increasing effectiveness and watching costs, telemedicine in the form of videoconferencing would seem to fulfill needs in multiple areas where delivery of care can be difficult. By deploying videoconferencing in real time with varied caregivers, doctors, nursing staff, and pharmacists, patients will be able to experience a high continuity of care, while health professionals will have a better picture of the patient’s health overall through sharing of information.
Continuity of Care and Patient Well-Being
Communication between healthcare professionals across a wide range of specialties can improve patient outcomes significantly. By sharing information, a patient’s “team” can consult with one another and with the patient about their care. Much like the development of digital records replaced the endless shuffling and shuttling of files, videoconferencing eliminates the lag time that a sometimes critically ill patient can experience when waiting to hear from various professionals, and can reduce miscommunication between patient and professionals, and the professionals themselves. Better communication ends up resulting in more consistent and contiguous care. Meeting patient needs for continuity of care should follow closely by the National Institutes of Health’s definition.