Doctors using video chats to make diagnoses causing concern

Although technological advances are propelling the medical field forward, experts are worried about the current trend of doctors using Skype in place of face-to-face consultations.

The foundations of the medical community are beginning to crack as the demand from patients for immediate solutions is rising. People seeking quick diagnosis’ from doctors has led them to use Skype and FaceTime sessions for answers, according to Morning Ticker.

This new way of providing medical care is cheaper and also more convenient for both parties. It is also supported by the fact that it removes a lot of the anxiety that is commonly linked to going to the doctor for many people.

But it is raising alarm across the medical world as many professionals are wondering whether this is a positive, innovative advance, or a less effective, quick way to save people time with a diagnosis that could quite possibly be incorrect.

The process has been dubbed “telemedicine,” a form of consultation with patients. But experts are arguing that this could actually lead to an increase in costs due to the lack of hands-on exams that prove to be largely more effective and accurate in terms of diagnosing medical problems. Without a physical in-person exam, the rate of misdiagnoses could skyrocket.

Unfortunately, trends that promise to be time-saving and provide medical diagnoses immediately from the comfort of one’s home is hard to resist for patients, and doctors as well who already traditionally have little extra time on their hands. Telemedicine provides doctors the ability to bill patients for a quick screen-chat and patients don’t have to spend a large amount of time traveling to and from the doctor and waiting for services when they don’t feel well.

But due to the high risks that outweigh the simple advantage of convenience, governing bodies are highly considering taking action against this trend before it becomes the “norm” in the medical field. At the least, they plan to install regulations around the process.

There are still some that are quick to embrace any technological invention that promises them less stress in life. There are states that are already welcoming “virtual medicine” into their rules, and updating current laws to absorb the process as a new procedure option.

The drive behind virtual medicine is as simple as any businesses’ level of competition. Medicine is still a business and seeing that the traditional health systems are beginning to deteriorate, virtual medicine is promising to rebuild.

Telemedicine is pushing to become part of the solution to the problem just as urgent care centers, retail clinics and other startup medical companies have done. Video consultations could be the next wave in handing out quick medical advice at a lower consultation fee while providing prescriptions without ever a need to visit a doctor’s office. The concern lies in the long-term cost patients will be paying with their health.


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