The newest frontier in telehealth: emergency medicine

Telehealth has been a prominent buzzword in the past few years. With the advent of Covid-19 and the newfound respect for telehealth services, telehealth/telemedicine has been a huge focus for healthcare organizations and clinicians alike. US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Provides a broad definition: “Telehealth—sometimes called telemedicine—allows your doctor to provide care to you without a personal office visit. Essentially, telehealth is done over the Internet through Internet access on a computer, tablet, or smartphone.”

Within the scope of this definition, telehealth does not quite look like something that the emergency medicine (EM) practice would embrace, given that the nature of EM entails both high critical and critical care. Despite this discrepancy, EM as a discipline is slowly adapting in order to make better use of this transformative technology.

In fact, there are a variety of different dimensional health modalities slowly being introduced into the world of electromagnetism. HHS breaks it down into five different potential categories of use:

  • remote sorting: Use of telehealth methods to determine the severity of a patient’s injuries and the care and resources required
  • Remote emergency care: “Telemedicine connects providers in a central emergency department with providers and patients in speaking hospitals (often small, remote, or rural) through video or similar telehealth technology.”
  • Virtual tours: Monitor emergency department patients remotely, reducing the number of medical providers and doctors needed on site
  • E-consulting: Providers and physicians can request consultations or specialized management of patients
  • Telehealth for follow-up care: “Telehealth technology can also be used to provide follow-up care to patients who have been triaged but not sent to the emergency department, or to patients who have been discharged from the emergency department.”

American Medical Association recently I published an article that confirm this concept. Tania Henry, AMA Contributing News Writer, explains recently AMA Telehealth Immersion Program Together with the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP), they discuss innovative ways in which telemedicine can become a mainstream method of emergency care. The article quotes ACEP’s Chief of Telehealth, Aditi Joshi, MD: “Emergency medicine does not happen in one location in the hospital and emergency physicians are trained to care for acute care cases arising anywhere,” including telehealth.

Simultaneously, training programs are preparing to prepare for this. Take, for example, the Department of Emergency Medicine at George Washington University (GWU), which offers Telemedicine and Digital Health Fellowship. The purpose of the program “is to develop future leaders in telemedicine and digital health […and…] Empower clinicians to develop clinical competency in the delivery of telemedicine, leadership in the creation of new programs, core technical knowledge for telehealth delivery, and expertise to significantly influence the rapidly growing and changing field of telemedicine, telehealth, and telehealth After , mobile health . ”

Thomas Jefferson University also offers something similar: Telehealth Leadership Fellowship. The primary focus of this program is on four aspects: leadership development, entrepreneurship, academia and research, and clinical experience, all within the broader scope of telehealth.

In fact, telehealth has rapidly expanded to include other medical specialties, including neurology, cardiology, and primary care settings. Notably, an important benefit of this new method is that it provides access to care and access to trained medical professionals for underserved communities and communities. Undoubtedly, time will tell about the huge impact that emergency medicine will have in the ranks of potential uses for telehealth in the coming years.