Telemedicine has been around in some shape or form since the mid 1900s but has become most prominent in the past decade with the growth of the internet and smart device technology. Initially, telemedicine was used to connect specialist doctors with patients in a different location by phone, for example, when specialists were not available in rural locations.
In the past decade, telemedicine has become an increasingly important part of the Australian healthcare system and has improved how medical support is accessed by patients and healthcare institutions that are in need of support. Some telehealth services are currently supported by Australia’s Medicare system.
With the advancement of technology, patients and healthcare institutions can now access telemedicine services, like My Emergency Doctor, in real-time via phone and high-definition video calls whenever they want and from wherever they are.
Telemedicine vs. Telehealth
Many people ask ‘what is telehealth?’, ‘what is telemedicine?’ and ‘what is the difference between them?’. The two terms are similar, yet there is a clear distinction between telemedicine and telehealth.
Telehealth is a broad term that encompasses the use of telecommunications technologies to provide medical or health education, training, care, services or education across varying distances and locations.
Telemedicine differs as it specifically refers to the delivery of medical services via telecommunications technologies, such as telephone or video conferencing. Telemedicine involves medical professionals providing diagnosis and treatment for patients from a different location to the patient using phone or video calls.
The Benefits of Telemedicine
Seamless access to medical professionals and services.
My Emergency Doctor enhances existing pathways by enabling patients who are unable to travel. Patients can now access medical services without leaving where they are, saving time and effort. This can especially benefit patients that are elderly, disabled, in need of palliative care or are located in remote areas.
Increased support and operational efficiencies for busy healthcare institutions.
Australian hospitals, ambulances, and rural health services have fast access to specialist emergency physician (FACEM) support when they are experiencing patient overflow, staff absences or need a second-opinion.
Slows the spread of infectious disease.
As we have seen in the instance of the COVD19 pandemic, the Australian government acted quickly to stand up telehealth policies that enabled telemedicine to be commonplace. This has been beneficial for not only those with weak immune systems or underlying conditions, but for the community at large.
Increases access to specialists that patients might not otherwise be able to see.
In remote regional areas where communities are smaller and more geographically dispersed, telemedicine can be substantially beneficial to medically under served communities where specialist clinician shortages exist.
Increased medical workforce satisfaction
For medical professionals in regional, rural and remote communities, telemedicine allows them access to medical specialists that they might not otherwise have access to and more capacity to serve their local population. Telemedicine dissolves distance which can allow doctors and nurses serving communities outside of metropolitan areas more support, more opportunities to learn and additional rest when required.
About UsRead Our Story
Driven by his first-hand experience as a Senior Emergency Specialist in a busy emergency department our Founder, Dr Bowra, wanted to create a service which would support healthcare institutions and in turn, provide all Australians access to senior specialist emergency doctors, no matter the time of day or where they lived.
How we help Healthcare InstitutionsRead More
My Emergency Doctor is taking the pressure off emergency care delivery. We provide healthcare institutions and health services with on-demand access to FACEMs via phone and video calls. Medical consultations happen in real-time, regardless of your location in Australia.
How we help PatientsRead More
My Emergency Doctor offers online consultations with senior specialist emergency doctors directly to patients via telephone or video call. Our doctors are available, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, providing online emergency consultations that include diagnosis, x-ray and pathology referrals.