In a country as vast as Australia, the ways available to communicate with remote patients and staff is a something healthcare practitioners and institutions are all too aware of.  When telehealth video conferencing was first introduced it really was the new frontier of healthcare in Australia.  Offering medical assistance to people who didn’t have access to it meant a broader reach of healthcare services to Australia.

Telehealth reaches everyone
For many years now healthcare services have taken up telehealth and it is one of the main ways to provide healthcare services for patients who live in regional, rural and remote areas.

Instead of having to travel to the nearest major city to see a specialist, an increasing number of patients are using video-conferencing. This facility could be offered by their local GP or another local healthcare venue such as a hospital, aged-care facility or retirement home.

New frontier
One way telehealth is being hailed as the new frontier of healthcare is those in the field believe, for example, that most of the people in hospitals are there to primarily be monitored. If that is the case, with a reliable internet connection, a number of those patients could be monitored from home (where they’ll recuperate quicker) and that would reduce costs while freeing up beds for other people.

Benefits
An Australian pilot program offering telehealth in the home found that it meant patients were released from hospital sooner; patients were more aware of their condition and there were fewer unplanned hospital admissions.

Video conferencing is often the most popular telehealth care option, and is an effective consultation tool for a variety of applications which also help reduce overheads. Here are some of the benefits:

  • Video conferencing connects emergency providers with medical specialists who otherwise would not be available for consults;
  • Remote ICU monitoring programs at hospitals provide 24-hour backup, supervision, and support to ICU medical staff by using a combination of real-time video to observe patients, interactive video communications with on-site ICU providers, and digital patient monitoring equipment
  • Primary care providers can consult with medical specialists who are not available locally;
  • Providers can discuss patient cases, regardless of location, and without the need for travel;
  • Medical specialists can examine patients in remote locations when distance is a barrier, as is the case when patients live in rural areas
  • Patients with limited mobility can receive medical consultations at home, or in their local primary care provider’s office;
  • Language translators can provide video interpretation services to multiple locations, a cost-effective expansion of these programs.
  • Help educate, train and support remote healthcare workers on location;
  • Support people with chronic conditions

If you have been contemplating using Telehealth Video Conferencing to extend your reach or you have been using it and would like to find out more about the new advancements available, speak with one of our Technical Specialists here.

Download the “Connecting eHealth Technologies” eBook here.