Our guest on Healthcare Matters is Jonathan Terry, DO, ABIHM. Dr. Terry is an osteopathic physician and surgeon and general psychiatrist who uses telemedicine extensively in his practice. Dr. Terry practices at the United Health Centers of San Joaquin Valley, which recently won the 2016 Health Delivery, Quality and Transformation Award from the American Telemedicine Association.In Part I of our series, Physician Focus: Telemedicine, we ask Dr. Terry to define telemedicine and tell us about some of the services that can be provided through telemedicine.
This is only one of the many questions we asked Dr. Terry about telemedicine. Check out all of them here:
- Defining Telemedicine
- Ways the Affordable Care Act Affects Telemedicine
- Four Advantages of Telemedicine
- Informed Consent and Telemedicine
- Electronic Medical Records and Documentation in Telemedicine
- Legislative Challenges to Telemedicine
- Telemedicine Reimbursement Rates
- Physician Focus: Telemedicine
Mike Matray: You’re a proponent of telemedicine, and I was hoping we could begin by defining the practice of telemedicine.
Dr. Terry: That would be great Mike. Really good question to start. You know for definitions I always like to go with the American Telemedicine Association, or the ATA, which is recognized as one of the leading groups as an advocate and resource for those of us who do telemedicine. How does the ATA define telemedicine? They keep it pretty broad. They say that telemedicine is the use of medical information that’s exchanged from one site to another by any electronic communication involved with patient care. What does this mean in practice? Well, this can include video consultation, kind of like the video conversation we’re having right now. It can be transmission of still images in what we call store and forward, which has been great for dermatology, for radiology, things like that. It also includes E-health. Things like patient portals that many of us participate in, and even remote diagnostics. The opportunities to use technology to say, listen to a patient’s heartbeat or conduct vital signs across a distance.