Telemedicine comes to aid during COVID-19 health pandemic
COVID-19 has adversely affected all of us including patients and doctoral practice. Doctors have been continuously answering phone calls throughout the day. Although there are doctors trained to solve problems and counsel patients and teams are in place to take care of this need, a large solution is needed. Apart from a helpline number, a telemedicine system can prove to be extremely useful for patients during this time of disaster. Let us look at some of the major reasons for phone calls from diabetes patients.
Diabetes patients face anxiety around getting COVID infection and the likelihood of increase in hospitalization.
The second question is around unavailability of medications, and this is a major concern for patients. Some educated patients even asked what happens if the lockdown gets extended by a month or two. In these difficult times, doctors themselves are required to answer the questions.
The third aspect is around consultation for lab investigations.
There is a need to raise awareness on the potential offered by telemedicine as the ideal solution during this disaster. The original definition of telemedicine is providing medical service through communication devices – the simplest one being a telephone. It could either be a normal phone call or a video call. With a proper telemedicine system in place in a hospital, even dosage modifications can be carried out. With telemedicine and telecommunication, it is possible to keep track of blood sugar levels in patients and manage diabetes. Patients are important and therefore, telemedicine must be considered and promoted as the preferred mode for consultation – and can help us tide over this looming health scare.
Jothydev Kesavadev is an Indian Research diabetologist and the founder Chairman and Managing Director of Jothydev's Diabetes Research Centers in Trivandrum, Attingal and Kochi, Kerala.