Friday, September 14, 2007

Telemedicine Service Providers

I will be listing companies that provide telemedicine services. I just came across Secure Telemedicine
They appear to be appealing to consumers (patients).

This company connects patients with doctors via telemedicine. The company is marketing to patients by offering them a convenient way to consult with a doctor remotely:

"We use technology to bridge the distance between doctors and
patients in need. We look forward to helping you and your family take better care of your health"

How do they Partner with Doctors?: They allow doctors and PAs (Physicians Assistants) to supplement their incomes by providing consultations on a full or part-time basis to Secure Telemedicine's patients. They call it
the "Telemedicine Consultation Program (TCP)".

Reasons why a doctor would want to Partner: They make a pitch to doctors who are semi-retired/retired, want to work from home, want to expand their current practice.

My question regarding this model, being a physician in practice, is how much work can I realistically expect ? If I were to just get 1 or 2 consults per day, would the extra effort required to perform this service be worth the small potential payback? My experience with patients is that they generally do not want to spend extra money for these type of extra medical services. They can usually speak to their own physicians regarding their medical issues. I know patients always complain about not being able to access their physicians, but when it comes to paying the extra $30 to $60 (or what ever the payment is) I'm not sure how many takers there really are.

Here's how Secure Telemedicine describe their telemedicine process on their website:

Telemedicine Consults

"By logging into a secure physician administration page, the physician will pull up his Telemedicine Case Queue containing 10-50 new telemedicine cases with medical records, histories and possible refill requests. Each case will have three possible components:

  1. EMR Review (Physician review)
  2. Teleconsult (Physician consults patient by phone)
  3. E-prescribing"

"During the teleconsult, the physician will consult with the patient and discuss case, condition and history, and decide on a proper course of action. The Consulting Physician's job is to evaluate the medical history and condition information in each case, and based on that review either:

  • Approve
  • Reject
  • Put on hold and request be faxed an update of the patient medical history if one is necessary; call the patient and verify any additional information deemed necessary; or order a medical exam to continue the medical evaluation."

"If a patient requests prescription medication, the telemedicine physician will review all medical records and make a recommendation."

No comments: