There are both advantages and disadvantages: how online medicine works in the USA
The coronavirus pandemic has become a real test for the American healthcare system. Thousands of hospitals are experiencing an acute shortage of equipment and protective equipment. This is stated in the video "Voices of America".
Non-urgent operations are canceled, Americans are urged to call their doctor first before going to the hospital.
At the same time, the range of services provided online is expanding - this has both advantages and disadvantages.
With the advent of COVID-19, telemedicine has become vital for the healthcare industry, with thousands of hospitals around the world urging patients to opt out of visits.
“Patients should limit the number of their visits to the hospital while they are waiting in line for appointments, especially during a pandemic. Online consultation will help prevent the rapid spread of the virus, ”says Zhou Jian, director of a hospital in Shanghai.
But online visits also have drawbacks - it is more difficult to make a correct diagnosis remotely, and besides, not all people know how to use online applications. But a number of new telemedicine services are helping to solve the latter problem.
For example, the American virtual health company Telladok. They say that over the past few weeks, their services have become 50% more people. Their competitors such as Nokasap are also becoming more popular.
Both services help people easily schedule consultations, change appointment times, add insurance information, and get in touch with several specialists in a short amount of time.
“We are trying to make it as easy as possible for the user to communicate with the doctor, as well as allow hospitals to receive feedback and wishes from patients about the effectiveness of such a system,” says Dokas Director Punit Maheshwari.
One of the challenges of remote examinations is how to do tests. But many companies in the United States make special kits, thanks to which you can do tests yourself without leaving your home.
For example, Texas-based startup Everlevel offers over 30 kits for a variety of laboratory tests, including hormone levels, food allergies, blood cholesterol levels, HIV tests, reproductive health and stress tests.
“The pandemic has become the driving force that has forced us to introduce all these new methods, which, in my opinion, will become the norm,” says Maheshwari.
Inadequate Internet coverage in some regions, insurance difficulties and other problems of telemedicine remain, but in a pandemic, it can save many lives.
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