There is no denying that telemedicine is changing the healthcare sector. It is making healthcare more convenient and more accessible, reducing the number of hospital re-admissions and ensuring more profitable practices. Nevertheless, healthcare professionals need to work hard to ensure telemedicine continues to be a success. With that in mind, read on to discover some top telemedicine etiquette tips so that you can deliver an outstanding service to your patients.
- Be clear with any post-appointment instructions – If your patient must schedule a follow-up appointment, make sure you tell them this. If your patient needs to pick up a prescription, you should also let them know. Patients can become frustrated when they feel like they don’t know what to do after their telemedicine appointment. Make sure you are direct and clear with any instructions you provide.
- Keep lag time in mind – Not all Internet connections and telemedicine software are created the same, so you may need to accommodate some lag time. It is a good idea to wait two seconds before speaking so that you can be sure your patient has finished talking too. It will help the conversation to flow better.
- Have a set approach – There are many uses of telemedicine, from home healthcare and birth control counselling to minor urgent care and prescription renewal. It’s important to have a set approach in place for dealing with each type of appointment you are handling. This will help you to keep things more organised and ensure you don’t forget anything during your call.
- Communicate when you need to look away – It is likely that you will need to look away from the screen during your web call, as you will have to make some notes. Let your patient know that you are still listening, but you are writing down notes about the appointment as required. This can be obvious when you have a patient in your office, but it’s not so evident over webcam.
- Dress the part – You may be working from your home office, but this does not mean that you should wear a T-shirt and sweatpants. You should dress exactly as you would if you were working at your practice. This will give off a professional vibe, and you will instil confidence in your patients.
- Be punctual – One of the main benefits of telemedicine for patients is the fact that it eliminates the waiting times they usually have to go through when visiting their local practice. You need to make sure that this is the case. Your patients won’t be happy if they have to sit at their computer for 30 minutes, waiting for you to come online. It is a good idea to have a notification system in place, which alerts patient via text or email that you are ready to see them.
- Set up a professional space – Last but not least, you should set up a professional space for your virtual visits. It is important that there are no distractions. Patients want to feel secure that their privacy is protected, which is why a clean and quiet space is a must. Plus, it looks much more professional.