Skype or facetime consultations cut out travel, save time and mean patients are seen sooner. Many varicose vein consultations can be done online.

“We introduced telehealth for vascular patients at Wellington regional hospital”, says Vascular Specialist Richard Evans, “because we needed to speed up access for patients and be smarter in getting to see people sooner.

Telehealth, where a patient’s consultation with the Specialist is over the phone, internet or video, suits everyone:
• the patient by not having to leave home or work to travel to their appointment, saving time and money
• the Specialist by being able to share notes with other practitioners in real time, and being able to see more patients
• potentially even the environment with the carbon benefits of fewer people travelling to appointments.

Using telehealth means non-urgent patients no longer need to see the Specialist in person for surveillance, consultations or follow ups. The patient books an appointment as normal and the Specialist phones or links them at the appointed time.

“It won’t suit every diagnosis,” says Richard Evans, “but it does suit a lot of vascular patients who don’t need to be seen face to face, especially post procedure.

“At our REV clinics we offer Skype or Facetime consultations and phone follow ups. Our patients often send us photos, for example, post varicose vein treatments.

“A telehealth option for the elderly, especially, removes another pain point. Attending an appointment in person may mean lots of travel for as little as a 10-minute follow up. They’re delighted when they know they can ‘see us’ over the phone.”
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