Most of the attention that telehealth has garnered over the past year has focused on using remote technology for synchronous virtual patient visits. During portions of 2020, these visits represented as much as 70% of all patient encounters.
As I am sure you know, your staff are an essential component of your healthcare organization. They bring comfort to your patients, efficiency to your process, and growth to your business as a whole, enabling you to reach more patients in increasingly innovative and life changing ways. So when you are setting up a remote second opinion service, you need to consider how to hire (or choose from within your existing staff) the right team. Since you are here, you likely are wondering what kind of staff do you need to offer remote second opinions, and more specifically, should you hire a dedicated administrator for your remote second opinion program?
Although much international travel has been curtailed due to the pandemic, healthcare organizations are still finding a ready audience with prospective patients abroad. Without in-person visits, delivering medical care to patients can be challenging. However, remote second or expert opinions can overcome these geographic inconveniences without sacrificing great medical care.
When you're confronted with a complex or critical health care diagnosis, you may be scared or confused by the prognosis or treatment recommended. This is often the time patients seek another opinion. Generations ago, patients relied on their personal physicians to make all their health care related decisions. But no single physician is infallible, and most decisions are better when scrutinized by another informed source.
As a patient, when and how do you go about getting a second opinion?
If you are like most practices, the words “virtual care” have become critical to your survival this year. With the changes the world has faced as a result of the COVID-19 global pandemic, facilities that once relied exclusively on in-person treatment have been forced to explore ways to meet their patients’ needs without always seeing them face-to-face. By this point in time, most practices are aware of telehealth software that can enable a virtual meeting with a patient. These programs allow physicians to talk through simple issues with patients during a live video consultation. But what about complex or chronic issues? What if your practice offers specialized care that requires an assessment of a patient’s case history?
Basic telehealth software does not typically have an answer for these questions as the systems lack a comprehensive method for records aggregation and presentation. It’s for these cases that your virtual care toolbox needs to include a method for Remote Second Opinions. But what is a Remote Second Opinion (RSO)?
Well, I’m glad you asked…