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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Would you use Skype for a doctor's appointment?

This article is a little breezy but it asked the question to the public if they would be willing to use Skype for a doctor's appointment.  A few citizens have replied with comments.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/yourcommunity/2012/08/would-you-use-skype-for-a-doctors-appointment.html?cmp=rss
I heard a Nurse at an eHealth conference in Toronto talk about how Skype was being used for remote villages in Newfoundland.  A lot of education and training is being done by web conferencing these days - saving on travel expense.  A Skype interaction between patient and physician is a no brainer in my opinion, as soon as physicians can work out how to bill for Skype calls.  It is in a way a return to the home visit tradition.  Dedicated telemedicine centers like Ontario Telemedicine Network are more robust versions of this, but the convenience and common sense of the Skype appointment needs more implementation.  I am not sure about the privacy and security of a Skype call, nor Skype's ownership by Microsoft, but I expect those are technological problems that can be worked through.  A quick search on "Skype" in Pubmed brought up some interesting research < here > articles.