How to have an effective telehealth visit, according to 2 doctors

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With routine medical care having to go remote during the coronavirus pandemic, telehealth is here to stay.
Telehealth appointments have a similar format to an in-person visit, but there’s still a few adjustments you’ll probably need to make.
Be sure to choose a private spot, and ensure that the visit will be as distraction-free as possible.
Make sure you still have all of the documents or information you’d bring to a normal visit.
Be sure to confirm next steps before you log off; you may need to coordinate things like blood work or an in-person visit.
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No matter what happens over the next few weeks, months, or even years, telehealth is likely to be an option for routine medical care going forward. This is especially true for patients who have difficulty getting to their appointment or who are at high risk for COVID-19. For everyone else, the convenience of telehealth in the midst of a busy world may remain alluring.

Telehealth appointments mirror in-person visits, where your clinician will ask various medical history questions and probe for specifics on your current health. Just like in the office, medical students or residents may accompany the physician. There can even be a limited medical exam with some providers collecting digital vital signs. All of this can help develop an effective medical plan for you, the patient.

With telehealth, you are in control and can take specific actions to maximize your experience. Here are some helpful tips for you to make each of your visits a success.

Prepare for your visit

The general rule for any telehealth visit is to approach it just as if you were going to the office:

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Being on time. Chances are, your provider is seeing other patients before and after your visit. Be ready five or 10 minutes before your appointment. We all know physicians can get delayed. At least with telehealth, you can wait in the comfort of home.
Testing the technology. Technical difficulties happen, even in a perfect world. Make sure to test your WiFi and device before your appointment. Your doctor’s office will provide instructions on which platform to use. A staff member may even offer to complete a trial run beforehand. In most cases, you can use a smartphone (iPhone, Android, etc.), desktop or laptop as long as your device has a camera. Whatever device, it should be fully charged and connected to the Wi-Fi.
Choosing the right location. Find a private spot in your home or wherever you are connecting. Your provider may be in their office or possibly at home, but they will be in a private area to maintain your privacy. Sitting outside, in a communal space of the house, or even walking down the street (it happens!) can create a noisy environment with multiple distractions. This can lead to repeated questions or avoiding more sensitive questions due to the location the patient is in.
Avoiding distractions. Of course, it can’t be perfect. Try to anticipate the unexpected. COVID-19 has forced many parents and caregivers …read more

Source:: Business Insider

      

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