Doctors and nurses are some of the hardest workers out there, but let’s be honest, the less you see of them, the better because it means you’re healthy. No one really likes going to the doctor. You’re already not feeling well, but because they need to examine you, they’re going to be poking and prodding to determine what’s wrong. Thankfully, medicine has evolved over the past few years. In light of the recent events in the country, we’re seeing those results now. Your health is our number one priority. Here’s what you need to know about telemedicine and how you can make the most out of each appointment:
What is Telemedicine?
Telemedicine is when your appointments are conducted virtually in the comfort of your own home. The biggest concern we hear from people is that they’ll just be filling out a questionnaire or have no human interaction at all. Rest assured, this is not the case! In these virtual appointments, you will have a video conference that can be conducted on any computer or smart device with a camera. You will fill out the same paperwork and patient history as you would typically, which
the doctor can review before the appointment. You will still be able to talk to the doctor one-on-one about why you’re there, what’s been going on, your treatment, etc.
How do you make the most out of your appointments?
These appointments are conducted in the same fashion as an in-office appointment. You will be given forms to fill out as thoroughly as possible about your medical history, family history, and reasons for the visit. This information will help your doctor give you the best treatment. With the virtual appointment, we understand that it might feel a little bit awkward at first. Here’s how you can make the appointment successful:
● Be in a well-lit room: Even with virtual meetings, the doctor needs to be able to see you. Make sure the room you’re in has plenty of natural light or bright overhead light, and that you’re facing to avoid creating a shadow. If possible, have some sort of penlight or a small flashlight so the doctor can look into your mouth and throat.
● Check the camera and microphone beforehand: We understand that virtual appointments might be uncomfortable already, but what makes them worse is technical difficulties. A couple of days before the appointment test to make sure the microphone and camera are working correctly. This also gives you a chance to find a great spot so the camera is at eye level so you feel like you’re talking directly with your doctor. If you need to, invest in headphones with a microphone attached to keep the audio crisp.
● Find a quiet spot: While telemedicine makes your day easier because you can avoid the commute and waiting time, you still need to make time for the appointment. Minimize the background distractions as much as possible. You’d be amazed at what the microphones can pick up. If children, the TV, or noises outside filter through, you and the doctor could miss parts of the conversation.
● Speak as clear as you can: Today, microphones can pick up things more clearly, which is why being is a quiet room is the best. With that being said, you should still speak as clearly as possible, slowing down if needed to ensure your doctor can understand you.
● Close down other programs: If you have too many applications open that require the internet, there might be too much struggle on the bandwidth. This could make the video call choppy or difficult to connect.
● Have enough power: Make sure your computer or tablet has a full battery or plug it in. This type of meeting can drain the battery faster than other programs, and you don’t want the battery dying halfway through the appointment.
● Have some questions ready: Have a list of questions and concerns written down before the meeting. You and your doctor can go down the list so you can get the most of the appointment.
● Have pen and paper ready: Even though everything is done digitally, keep a pen and paper on hand to write down any instructions and medications your doctor has for you.
If you have any questions or concerns about your telemedicine appointment, don’t hesitate to contact our office!