Telemedicine: What To Expect

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By News Team on June 24, 2020

As many of us are learning for the first time, telemedicine is a great way to get accurate and convenient care safely from home. 

As Christian Klaus, D.O. regional director of Family Medicine at Carilion Clinic puts it, “Telemedicine is us being able to provide virtual care for our patients at a distance.”

When To Use Telemedicine
Telemedicine is an excellent option for routine check-ups, conditions such as a sore throat or a sinus infection and can even be used for specialty visits. It can save you time, energy and worry without sacrificing the level of care you are used to.

Telemedicine can include phone calls, video visits and engaging with your provider through a patient portal like MyChart. It’s important to speak to your care team to determine which option is best for your medical needs.

At Carilion Clinic, telemedicine options are also used for specialty care, including:

  • Dermatology
  • Endocrinology (diabetes)
  • Gastroenterology 
  • Geriatric medicine
  • Infectious diseases
  • Physician-supported weight loss programs
  • Medical genetics 
  • Neurology
  • OB/GYN
  • Oncology
  • Otolaryngology
  • Orthopaedics
  • Occupational therapy
  • Physical medicine and rehabilitation after surgery
  • Physical therapy
  • Pulmonology and sleep medicine
  • Psychiatry
  • Rheumatology

What To Expect From Telemedicine
Not sure what to expect from telemedicine? Here's everything you need to know before your visit.

First, download the app. You will need a laptop or desktop computer, phone or tablet with video and sound capability. Before a video visit, your care team will help you download the HIPAA-complaint app to your device. You will want to make a test call before your appointment to work out any technical glitches. 

At the time of your appointment, simply log in and connect with your provider for a one-on-one video call. The look and experience of the call will be very similar to the look and feel of a video call with a friend or loved one on a video chat service.

During the video visit, your provider will still be able to give you the dedicated on-one-on care you are used to in an in-office setting.

Once the call is over, you will be able to view your after-visit summary in your MyChart patient portal. 
 
Why Telemedicine Works
One of the biggest advantages of telemedicine is the ease and convenience of a video visit. Instead of having to travel to and from your appointment or take more time off from work, you can receive the same level of care and attention of an in-office visit from home.

Less travel means lower cost, lower risk of exposure to COVID-19 and consequently less stress. 

Because we use a HIPAA-compliant video software, there's no need to worry about your privacy: all of your personal and private information will be kept confidential and safe.

When Telemedicine Doesn't Work
In true emergency situations, there is no substitute for the emergency department and you should not seek virtual care in an emergency. If you experience chest pain, difficulty breathing or severe bleeding, call 9-1-1 or go to your nearest emergency department.

Carilion Clinic’s level 1 trauma center can treat serious illness quickly and thoroughly, while offering on-site access to a wide range of specialists.
 
To see if a telemedicine visit is appropriate for your needs, contact your care team through MyChart or call your provider's office. Your care team will be there to discuss the process step-by-step and answer any questions or concerns you may have.

Learn more about your digital health options to help ensure that you have continued access to the same high-quality care you are used to. And learn about the measures we're taking to see you safely when you do need an in-person visit or procedure.

See us safely at CarilionClinic.org/safe.
As always, and like never before, we're here to see you safely through all your health care needs. Visit CarilionClinic.org/safe to learn how. For up-to-date information about our response to COVID-19, visit CarilionClinic.org/coronavirus.