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Pediatric telehealth

October 12, 2020 · 7 min read

There are many conditions that pediatricians manage, like asthma, diabetes, genetic disorders, mental health problems and more, that can be effectively handled via telemedicine.

With COVID-19 still present, parents shy away from putting their child to potential exposure through an in-person appointment. With telehealth platforms as an addition to pediatrician practices, doctors around the world minimize these health risks for patients and their families. With telehealth, pediatricians offer more accessible care to their patients, which not only saves time and exposure, but also results in better health outcomes and few missed/canceled appointments.

Read along to learn what other benefits both patients and pediatricians gain with telehealth and what type of visits can be done via telehealth, and more.

Types of services pediatricians conduct with telemedicine

On-demand sick visits and exams

Such visits are for non-emergency conditions like colds and other viruses, cough, rash, etc. Doctors can guide families and their children on what medication is required for the treatment and what options they have.

Video visits

Video visits allow pediatricians to assess the child remotely, often avoiding an unnecessary trip of the patient to the office or urgent care clinic. This not only improves the patient’s recovery time, but it also reduces canceled appointments. Furthermore, there is a group of children with complex medical conditions that often rely on their caregivers. Healee offers them the ability to include the caregiver or the relative who takes care of them in the live HD video with them.

Medication management visit

Children who are closely monitored by pediatricians, like the ones with asthma and diabetes, have the option to have their medication prescribed or refilled online. Telehealth helps doctors supervise these patients without the need to interrupt children’s school day or parents’ day at work.

Mental health treatment

Children can get psychiatric counseling via telehealth, especially the ones that are shy to speak to the psychiatrist face-to-face and feel more at ease while being in a comfortable atmosphere at home.

Lactation and nutritional counselling 

This parent counselling is done during the first year/years of the baby’s development, which helps mothers be active participants in their own care for the baby by trying to do things on their own rather than the care provider doing it for them. Telehealth empowers these mothers to take the key role of understanding their children. Statistics show that mothers are already loving the advantages the online lactation consulting gives them. In addition, we should acknowledge that this is the time when millennials become parents and more than one million US women born from 1981 to 1996 are giving birth every year, according to the Pew Research Center. These new parents turn to their smartphones more and more to access information and services. Connecting with their pediatrician via a digital platform is expected to be a service they are and will be looking for a long time ahead.

Follow-ups with patients recently seen in-office

Pediatricians can track patient data (vital signs, symptoms, etc.) by subscribing to their health profiles on the app, and track their progress by having access to their health data 24/7. 

Setting up days for flu shots

Parents can speak to their pediatricians online and get informed about upcoming immunizations. Healee also offers a functionality to doctors to send mass message campaigns to selected groups of patients. One such example is flu shot campaigns, where pediatricians contact parents whose children have to get the shot. 

Chronic condition follow-ups

Tele-pediatrics offers frequent and consistent medical care to children with chronic conditions or disabilities. A big advantage for them is that tele-pediatric consultations remove barriers like stress from travelling and waiting at the hospital.

Emergency visits

With telehealth platforms like Healee, pediatricians can receive SMS message notifications whenever there is an emergency call from a parent who, for example, is afraid that their child might have an emergency in the middle of the night. Doctors have the option to assess the situation at hand, ask for all symptoms, check the vital signs of the patient and conclude that it is not an emergency call. With such quick response via telehealth, pediatricians can reduce high admission rates in hospitals for cases that can be handled online, which also helps for better healthcare outcomes. Yet it is important to note that in cases where there is even the slightest suspicion that the situation might require an urgent in-person visit, Healee gives doctors the tools to inform parents that their child needs an on-site emergency consultation.

Follow-up for parents whose children are in neonatal intensive care

Telemedicine allows doctors to get in touch with families who are separated from their infants and inform them about the child’s condition. 

Counselling for new parents and the healthy newborn

Some parents often have a number of questions that arise after they return home with their newborn. All these parental concerns for sleeping routines, nutrition and healthy eating habits can be addressed at any time via telehealth consultations. Specialists can give them guidance on breastfeeding too. Pediatricians can alleviate these uncertainties and parents will be able to concentrate more on the excitement and less on the challenges they face because they know that their pediatrician is a click away. What is even more fascinating is that telehealth consultations don’t interrupt the baby’s naps or meals unlike some in-person consultation in the clinic.

Telehealth platforms offer these and many more benefits  similar or better functionalities than in-person consultations. Here are a few of them: 

Consultation framework

Healee, for example, has tailored its platform to mirror face-to-face consultations, so that the real consultation process is followed precisely. One consultation via Healee has a clearly defined start, time for reply, conclusion, prescription (if necessary), potential follow-up, etc. 

Flexibility in scheduling and planning consultations

Healee offers patients the option to book an in-person or online consultation from the comfort of their homes, without having to travel to a hospital only to register a consultation with a specialist or have to call the reception in the hospital only to have to wait until the receptionist books it. Healee offers a dedicated online booking service where parents can book a consultation with two clicks and be informed about the upcoming consultation via SMS and email.

Reviewing health history

Pediatricians can review individual health history in the patient’s Healee profile, which includes various details of the health status of the child, like vitals, symptoms, medication, lab results.

Flexibility to share static and dynamic images, lab results and more

Telehealth platforms equip pediatricians with advanced tools for data exchange. Specialists can send and receive all kinds of information and visualise all this data from within Healee, without having to leave the platform.

Doctors can learn more about Healee’s additional functionalities that help them deliver more comprehensive health care to patients here

An American study from 2015 showed that 58% of the in-person visits to the pediatrician were non-urgent visits. There are so many other in-person consultations around the world that are unnecessary and cost parents a lot of time in travelling and being out of work. Moreover, travelling and hospital visits usually stress the child even further. Telehealth offers a solution by giving parents and pediatricians the opportunity to connect online.

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