Once upon a time, doctors made house calls–if you were lucky enough to live in a place with a doctor. This era in medicine gets romanticized a lot in dramas created by the BBC, and while it was undeniably great to have a doctor come to you, they probably also weren’t practicing what we would call modern medicine.
Nowadays you go to the doctor because doctors are busy.
The historic shift from house calls to offices is complicated, but a lot of it has to do with efficiency. Medical procedures improved as did our collective understanding of health, and at some point it just made more sense for patients to go to the doctor instead of the doctor coming to you. Which is all well and good when patients can get to an office, but what if something prevents them from visiting?
Something like a pandemic.
As the saying goes, time waits for no man, and health issues don’t just stop because of world events. Fortunately, healthcare professionals are on the cutting edge of innovation, and many healthcare providers have discovered a solution to seeing patients even during a pandemic: telehealth.
House Calls 2.0
While we totally understand that it’s hard to see the upside of something as awful as a pandemic, the rise of telehealth could lead to a fundamental change with how patients see doctors.
Telehealth combines the personal care of bygone house calls with the benefits of modern medicine. If you haven’t had to do telehealth yet, your medical provider will give you access to a secure video portal where you can talk to a provider about what ails you. Like everything in the healthcare industry, privacy is of utmost concern, so this portal is much more secure than your Zooms and Skypes.
Even better? A lot of these video services are baked right into medical portals. That means that patients can look through their files, see upcoming appointments and access their information while waiting for the call to begin. And doctors can also do the same.
What’s Up, Doc?
Telehealth is much more than just seeing a doctor on your computer, though. Services are starting to pop up that lets you see a doctor when you want, where you want. These services connect you with medical professionals 24/7. The trade-off, of course, is that you aren’t seeing one particular doctor.
There are other on-demand healthcare solutions popping up, offering additional conveniences. Funny enough, some doctors are even using these services to make house calls!
Regardless of what the service does, on-demand healthcare is empowering patients more than ever before. Not only can patients see doctors from the safety of their own homes, but they can also make healthcare work on their own schedules. Doctors are still busy, undoubtedly, but with these technological innovations patients’ convenience doesn’t have to suffer.