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The Return of the House Call

A surprising benefit of the stay-at-home order was an increase in something that hasn’t been seen in decades. House calls. Telemedicine has been absolutely instrumental since the pandemic of COVID-19 causing Americans to be under stay-at-home orders. In a recent article from The Wall Street Journal, a doctor writes in to describe the enjoyment he had of getting to make “house calls”.

While many dermatologists have started using telemedicine, the rest of the medical field had been wary to adapt the telemedicine process. However, COVID-19 caused many doctors and nurses to have to learn telemedicine very quickly. While video visits are ideal for every appointment, they are essential for some visits.

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The Demands on Telemedicine

The Coronavirus pandemic is pushing many technologies ahead, none is more evident than in the world of telemedicine. This article published by the Wall Street Journal addresses the rapidly changing industry and challenges they are facing.

“Before the outbreak, telemedicine struggled to take hold, in part because of government regulation and a lack of interest from patients and big companies. Now, companies like Teladoc Health Inc. and Doctor on Demand Inc. are racing to add doctors and bandwidth, while big tech firms like Microsoft Corp. add services.”

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The Advancements of Telemedicine

What has taken years, suddenly has evolved in a matter of weeks. Telemedicine has been a work in progress for almost a decade, however, due to Coronavirus, the government has loosened restrictions allowing for many medical practices to quickly adopt the practice. Everything from dermatology to family practice doctors are quickly taking their work online.

In a recent article from MedicineNet they speak with Ivy Lee, MD, from the University of California, San Francisco, who is past chair of the AAD telemedicine task force and current chair of the teledermatology committee at the American Telemedicine Association. Lee states: “As we’re all practicing social distancing, I think physicians and patients are rethinking how we can access healthcare without pursuing traditional face-to-face interactions.”

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