Today technology has advanced by leaps and bounds and so has medical science. The ambit of medical health has gone well beyond just surgeries and administration of drugs to patients. Nowadays, it’s the power of video conferencing which is ruling the roost. Doctors today are making use of video conferencing for interactions regarding telemedicine, research, for providing individual care to patients and a host of other activities.
Meetings which are done using video conferencing greatly decrease the cost issues which arise when using conventional systems which use Multipoint Control Unit (MCU) and Quality of Service (QOS) Systems. They also increase efficiency by utilizing the MCU for connecting multiple video and audio sites to more than one conference in real time leading to better utilization of time. The MCU also supports mixed ISDN as well as IP video conferencing calls.
Use of Video Conferencing in Telemedicine and E-Health
One of the biggest applications of video conferencing happens to be in case of telemedicine and e-health. This is owing to the fact that it greatly helps those patients who live in rural or far off areas and for whom accessing a full-fledged medical facility could be more of an impediment. In such cases, telemedicine and e-health services provide such features to patients which helps them in furnishing their vitals, medical records, recent or old photos among other things.
The other uses of Video Conferencing in Telemedicine and E-Health are as follows:
For Illness Monitoring
This feature is mostly used by the governmental authorities as well as healthcare committees when an epidemic breaks out in order to gauge and mitigate the effects of the outbreak. Real time situational analysis is also done using telemedicine and e-health.
For Disaster Management
The features of telemedicine and e-health come in handy when calamities such as floods and earthquakes strike. During such catastrophes, when proper healthcare cannot be easily accessed, setting up of telemedicine and e-health services rules out the need for healthcare professionals to reach out to the affected areas and thus helps in reducing the costs incurred in the transportation of physicians and medical facilities.
Consultation from a Distance
The program of telemedicine and e-health can be used in providing health services in areas which are yet to open up fully functional medical facilities. This is highly beneficial for rural areas and remote places, where medical organizations are rather hesitant and apprehensive to set up fully functional institutions. In such cases, only an assessment of the medical condition of the patient is provided along with suggestions for professionals.
Taking Second Opinions
Telemedicine programs prove to be highly useful in cases where the patient has been diagnosed with a particular ailment but the doctor would like to take a second opinion from another professional who resides in another area. The patient can also get the reviews of the primary doctor validated from another doctor using video conferencing.
Mentoring Using Video Conferencing
The features of telemedicine and e-health can also be utilized in cases when a medical practitioner is unable to perform the required procedures due to lack of experience or ability. Under such circumstances, another professional can provide the required guidance and help him/her in doing the job at hand as well as provide an in-depth analysis.
Use for medical knowledge and increasing Awareness in Community
Telemedicine and e-health programs can be utilized for spreading awareness among the masses during the outbreak of epidemics without the need for a medical professional to be at ground zero. Video conferencing greatly aids in reaching out to a wide audience at the same time for the dissemination of information and that too, quickly.