Telemedicine is the technology that enables remote healthcare, thus making it possible for physicians to treat patients whenever needed and wherever the patient is by using a smartphone or computer for video chats, phone calls, emails, and text messages.
It includes all the way you and your doctor can use technology to communicate without being in the same room. Telemedicine is also called telehealth, digital medicine, m-health, or e-health. You can find out if your walk-in clinic in Sacramento offers telehealth services.
Telemedicine is a great alternative to the traditional health care system and ideal for situations in which there are:
- Diagnosis of common problems like sore throat, headache, digestive troubles, and back pain.
- The patients only need inquiries about various medical issues for home treatment.
- Post-treatment checking or follow-ups for chronic care.
- Faster refill of short-term medical prescriptions
- Patient’s inability to leave the house.
- Holidays, late nights, weekends, or other situations when regular care is impossible.
- The patient lives in a rural area or far from the doctor’s office
- Limited movement, transportation, or time
- Medical care is needed while the patient is away from home.
How Does It Work?
Using telemedicine service at any walk-in clinic in Sacramento is very easy. Usually, the clinic will have an online account or toll-free number on which patients can request a visit by submitting basic information on their condition. The physician then accepts or declines the visit or schedules it for the future. Although it is a wonderful technology, it may not be suitable for every practice or every situation. So before using telemedicine, the physician will assess their patient’s needs and ensure that it is an appropriate time to use the technology.
You can get telemedicine services in different ways depending on your physician’s offer. Two of the most common watts are through a patient portal or virtual appointments.
- Patient Portal: The patient portal allows the patient to send and get emails from the doctor or nurse, ask for prescription refills, and set up appointments. The doctor can also share your lab or imaging results via the patient portal and tell you what the reports interpret. This process is quite faster than waiting to talk to them on the phone. Each patient portal will have the security of a username and password.
- Virtual Appointments: Some physicians also let you have an appointment via phone or video call. Mental and behavioral health professionals and urgent care clinics often use these meetings.
Is It Always Useful?
Though it is ideal in situations like sharing home readings like blood sugar levels for blood pressure in case of long-term illnesses and to talk to your doctor about them; or for virtual urgent care, common cold, or sinus pain, for which the doctor can walk you through the process of pressing on different parts of your face to figure out what is causing it; it cannot help in other situations like having a sore throat or earache.
Remember that telemedicine can be used for many issues but not all. It can do many things but cannot replace all doctor visits. However, it is an extremely beneficial technology that can come in handy in urgent situations.
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