Will Medicine Change After COVID-19?

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way that health-care providers interact with their patients, and that change may be norm in the future, according to local health-care professionals.

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TAKINGCARE OF YOUR HEALTH AND WELLNESS IS STILL AN ESSENTIAL ACTIVITY WHILEFOLLOWING THE GOVERNOR'S STAY-AT-HOME ORDERS. SO, SOUTHWEST COLORADOMEDICAL PROVIDERS ARE TURNING TO TELEMEDICINE TO MEET THE COMMUNITY’SNEEDS. THANKS FOR WATCHING THE LOCAL NEWS NETWORK, BROUGHT TO YOU BYEXPRESS EMPLOYMENT PROFESSIONALS SERVING SOUTHWEST COLORADO. I’MWENDY GRAHAM SETTLE. WITH SO MANY UNANSWERED QUESTIONS ABOUTCORONAVIRUS IN OUR COMMUNITY,  AND PHYSICAL DISTANCING ANDSTAY-AT-HOME ORDERS IN PLACE, AREA RESIDENTS ARE RE-EVALUATING THENECESSITY FOR IN-PERSON MEDICAL APPOINTMENTS. PRACTICALLY OVERNIGHT,SPURRED BY THE GLOBAL PANDEMIC,LOCAL MEDICAL PROVIDERS AND PATIENTS HAVE EMBRACED TELEMEDICINE.


ITHINK THE MOST IMPORTANT THING TO NOTE ABOUT OUR COMMUNITY IS THAT WEHAVE ADAPTED SO QUICKLY TO THIS. WE WENT FROM ABSOLUTELY IN PERSONVISIT TO TELE-HEALTH IN FOUR DAYS, UH, FOUR WORK DAYS, AND WE ARESTILL SEEING A SMALL AMOUNT OF PATIENTS IN THE CLINIC, BUT WE AREABOUT 85% TELE-HEALTH RIGHT NOW


BEFORECOVID-19, LOCAL MEDICAL PROVIDERS RARELY USED TELEMEDICINE. BUT IT’SNOT NEW TO EVERYONE. DR.DAN SCHAEFER,A DIRECT PRIMARY CARE PROVIDER, IS A LOCAL LEADER IN THE TELE-HEALTHTREND. HIS DURANGO WHOLE HEALTH FAMILY MEDICINE CLINIC IS ROOTED INTELEMEDICINE.


DIRECTPRIMARY CARE, LIKE MY PRACTICE, WHOLE HEALTH FAMILY MEDICINE DOES,THIS HAS BEEN THE FOUNDATION OF DIRECT PRIMARY CARE SINCE IT STARTED,HAVING THAT ADDED-VALUE SERVICES, TELEMEDICINE, THROUGH DIFFERENTFORUMS, EITHER, YOU KNOW, THROUGH, YOU KNOW, VIDEO CONFERENCING ORTHROUGH TALKING ON THE PHONE, THROUGH CELL PHONE ACCESS TO, YOU KNOW,FOR THE PATIENTS, HAVE ACCESS TO THEIR DOCTORS THROUGH CELL PHONE,TEXT-MESSAGING TO FOR A CONVENIENT SORT OF QUICK INTERACTION. ORTHROUGH THE PATIENT PORTAL, WHICH IS LARGELY LIKE EMAIL, ALL OF THOSEDIFFERENT AREAS. I, I ENCAPSULATE INTO THE IDEA OF TELE-HEALTH ORTELE-MEDICINE.


SCHAEFERSAYS TELEMEDICINE WORKSBEST WHEN YOU HAVE A GOOD RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR MEDICAL PROVIDER.


BUTIN MY OPINION, THE ESSENTIAL FOUNDATION OF A STRONG PATIENT-DOCTORRELATIONSHIP IS THE KEY TO THE SUCCESSFUL EXPANSION OF TELEMEDICINE.TECHNOLOGY MAKES IT POSSIBLE, BUT A COLLABORATIVE RELATIONSHIPS WITHTHE DOCTOR - ACHIEVE THE ROBUST BENEFITS OF TELEMEDICINE.


TELEMEDICINENOT ONLY ALLOWS PATIENTS AND THEIR PROVIDERS TO PRACTICE PHYSICALDISTANCING AND COMPLY WITH STAY-AT-HOME ORDER, IT ALSO IMPROVESIMPROVES EFFICIENCY OFMEDICAL CARE DELIVERY, REDUCES COSTS, PROVIDES GREATER ACCESS,INCREASES PATIENT ENGAGEMENT, AND IT'S CONVENIENT. FRUSTRATINGBACK-AND-FORTH TEXTING, EMAILS AND PHONE CALLS ARE ALL BUT RELICS OFTHE PAST.  NOWTHAT SOUTHWEST COLORADANS ARE ADAPTING TO A NEW WAY OF HEALTHCARE,WILL TELE-HEALTH CONTINUE TO GROW AND EXPAND, AFTER THE CORONAVIRUSTHREAT HAS PASSED?  

IDO SEE IN THE FUTURE THAT WE WILL PROBABLY BE USING TELE-HEALTH MORETHAN WE EVER THOUGHT WE WOULD BE, JUST BECAUSE IT HAS BEEN SOSUCCESSFUL. WE HAVE HAD THOSE CALLS THAT PEOPLE SAY, YOU KNOW, IDIDN'T, I HAD NO BABYSITTER AND I DIDN'T KNOW THAT I COULD BE SEEN.AND SO THINGS THAT I THINK WE DIDN'T EVEN KNOW EXISTED, BARRIERS FORPEOPLE TO RECEIVING CARE, I THINK WE'VE RECOGNIZED THOSE AND WESTARTED TO CREATE LISTS. OKAY, WHAT DOES IT LOOK LIKE FOR OURPATIENTS IN THE FUTURE? SO WE'RE DEFINITELY DOING SOME OF THAT. WHATIS THIS GOING TO LOOK LIKE? SO I THINK THAT'S THE MOST INTERESTINGTHING THAT'S COME OUT OF THIS WHOLE TELE-HEALTH TRANSITION IS THAT WEIDENTIFIED A NEED THAT WE DIDN'T EVEN KNOW THAT WE HAD.


IFYOU’D LIKE TO MAKE A TELE-HEALTH APPOINTMENT IN CORTEZ WITHSOUTHWEST HEALTH SYSTEMS, CALL 970- 565-8556 OR GO TO SW HEALTH DOT ORG.IN LA PLATA COUNTY, CONTACT YOUR DOCTOR AND ASK ABOUT PHONE AND VIDEOAPPOINTMENT OPTIONS. THANKS FOR WATCHING THE LOCAL NEWS NETWORK,CREATED LOCALLY, DELIVERED LOCALLY AND SUPPORTED BY LOCAL BUSINESSES.I'M WENDY GRAHAM SETTLE.

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