Telemedicine ProgramsHealthcare Training Resource
June 5, 2012 — 920 views
Technology has certainly revolutionized all aspects of life, giving people new opportunities to remain connected, explore new worlds and, in some cases, receive superior health care from the leading doctors.
Telemedicine, or Telehealth, is an innovative program that delivers care to people residing in remote locations or to populations that do not have readily available care. However, it can also be used between local hospitals or across different sections of the same facility. Overall, telehealth makes it easier to give care.
While this technology helps improve the care given to patients all around the world, it is also cost-effective. Instead of employing a doctor to travel to prisons, military bases and industrial sites, telemedicine can be used, making the appropriate diagnoses in record time.
Store and forward
For the most part, there are two different kinds of telehealth technologies. The first is called store and forward, which transfers digital images from one location to another. A picture is taken using a camera and is then sent by a computer to another location. This type of telehealth is used for non-emergency situations, when treatments are made over the course of two days.
These images can be sent between buildings, across cities or from one area to another, providing superior care regardless of geographic location. Store and forward technology has altered the face of health care, giving doctors new resources to use every day.
Two-way interactive television (IATV)
The second use of telemedicine today is IATV. When a face-to-face consultation is appropriate, the patient and provider are able to speak through video conferencing technology. This allows patients to gain real-time treatments when they need it most, without having to wait for a doctor to travel to them. This type of care is most often used when patients are in hard-to-reach places, such as prisons, remote areas of the country or far away from specialists who can provide high-quality care.
Doctors who use IATV can also guide professionals who are in the presence of ailing patients through the ins and outs of complicated treatment practices. This gives people better access to the resources they need to get well.
As technology continues to advance, doctors will keep finding new ways to use it for patient care. Telemedicine has proven to be an effective way to provide superior treatment for those in need of immediate assistance, and developing the technology further may be worthwhile as time moves on.