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How are doctors (people in the health field) incorporating video conferencing into patient care?

6/14/2010 - Author: Felicia

Internet connection bandwidth has always been the technical limitation to the adoption of video conferencing. Now, many more rural areas have higher bandwidth connections and this is allowing doctors to use video conferencing to get help from specialists.

Many general doctors were previously taking photos of difficult cases and emailing photos to specialists in places like Mayo Clinic. This was not real-time and did not allow the specialist to interact directly with the patient. Video conferencing is enabling this interaction and providing for better patient care.

HelloDirect is one of the world's largest sellers of phone and conferencing equipment. In this article, they cover a test case of how Tacoma Radiology is successfully utilizing video conferencing equipment and how that equipment has been made to be very easy for the doctors to use.

Video conferencing is being utilized as a medical simulation teaching tool to allow teachers/doctors in remote areas to train medical students. 


I found another very interesting example of how video conferencing is being used to improve patient care. A care facility in London is using video conferencing to gain access to an interpreter for non-English speaking patients. The narrator in the video states that the quality of the video and sound is as effective as a face-to-face interpreter.

And locally, I know of medical practitioners using tools like GoToMeeting to train other practitioners around the country or in their own local region on the latest techniques. Often these practitioners are sharing photos that they have taken of their own patients with before and after shots, and even during surgery shots. These help the other practitioners to learn the aspects and benefits of a new or different care technique.