Telemedicine allows medical professionals to assess, diagnose, and treat patients remotely using phone calls, video calls, messaging, and other forms of electronic communication. Virtual visits are a major component of telemedicine, but telemedicine encompasses a broad array of services, including follow-up care, prescription refills, and mental/behavioral counseling delivered in various ways. All of this falls under the health IT umbrella.
What Is Telemedicine?
Telemedicine refers to the remote delivery of clinical services, often through a video or phone call, where a patient meets virtually with a healthcare provider to receive a diagnosis or follow-up care. Beyond virtual visits, telemedicine can connect patients with various remote services, including the ability to exchange messages with a therapist or request prescription refills (especially through the mail).
With the continued advancement of wearable devices able to monitor heart rate, blood pressure, blood glucose, and other crucial metrics, it is expected that these devices to be further incorporated into telemedicine in the future. Aside from preventative healthcare, such wearable devices can play a role in follow-up care and diagnostics, which can improve the capabilities of telemedicine and improve care coordination when a patient needs to be referred to a specialist for an in-person visit.
Telemedicine vs. Telehealth
Telemedicine is defined as the remote delivery of clinical services. The term is often used interchangeably with “telehealth,” but the latter refers to the remote delivery of any service, clinical or non-clinical.
For example, virtual visits are a clinical service and are, therefore, considered a telemedicine service. On the other hand, the remote delivery of provider training and medical education are considered non-clinical services, and so they fall under the umbrella of telehealth.
When referring to the remote delivery of clinical services, telehealth and telemedicine can be used interchangeably, but telemedicine is more exact.
How TempDev Can Help You Implement Telemedicine
TempDev’s team of experienced consultants, developers, and trainers are here to support enhanced accessibility, as well as customized features and templates. This enables you and your patients to have more control over data with improved transparency. While telemedicine is a powerful tool to deliver clinical care, it must be integrated well with the EHR for documentation purposes and the Practice Management system for appointment and billing purposes.
As part of our streamlining process, we help you implement a telemedicine product, Patient Portal, API, and other tools to better support patient engagement and telemedicine. From dashboards to automation and workflow redesign, TempDev offers the comprehensive resources and tools you need to ensure an optimized revenue cycle.
Contact us here or by calling us at 888.TEMP.DEV to begin discussing optimizing your telemedicine experience.