Telemedicine: Pros and Cons
to advancing technology, we can now do many things
from home: we can play casino
slot machines or order something from a country
on the other side of the globe. But perhaps the most
impressive example of technological advances is the
telemedicine applications: some of them are so advanced
that they resemble science fiction movies. So, what
is telemedicine. and what does it cover? What are
the benefits, and are there any downsides? Below,
we will answer all these questions for you.
Start with Basics: What Is Telemedicine?
technology, also known as telehealth, simply means
the distribution of health-related services and information
via telecommunication tools and electronic means.
As a simple example, we can show a doctor connecting
to the patient's home remotely and talking to him
through a camera. Using this method, for example,
you can ask questions to the doctor without having
to go to the clinic.
researchers argue that "telehealth" and
different from each other. For these people, telehealth
is simply preventive and promotive healthcare, and
telemedicine is the term for remote diagnosis and
monitoring. But no matter what name you use, this
technology can bring healthcare providers and patients
together without having to be in the same room.
is a service recognized and provided by WHO. It can
be used anywhere in the world as long as there is
a 4G speed connection. It includes:
Transmission of Medical Data: Data such as medical
images and bio scans can be sent by the patient to
the doctor, and the doctor can see them as soon as
he goes online. So patients and doctors do not have
to be online at the same time.
* Remote Monitoring: The doctor can monitor the patient
remotely using various medical devices. This is a
method used especially in chronic diseases. For example,
the patient's blood pressure or blood sugar can be
remotely monitored in real time.
* Interactive Interactions: This is the most common
use of telemedicine: the patient and the doctor can
talk in real time via video conference. This is a
feature that can also be used for diagnostic purposes.
is not difficult to understand what the advantages
of such technology are: telemedicine enables, above
all, even rural areas without access to a real doctor
to get medical services. Even if you live in a mountain
village, you can even reach a professor directly,
as long as you have an internet connection and a mobile
phone. This technology makes it particularly easy
to obtain clinical support. Your doctor can diagnose
and even start treatment without having to be physically
next to you. Moreover, he/she can regularly check
how the treatment is progressing: both parties (doctor
and patient) do not have to leave their locations
to do all this.
also makes transfer, organization and analysis of
medical data very easy. An MRI image taken in hospitals
can reach the doctor too late due to bureaucratic
obstacles. You may also have to go to the hospital
multiple times just because your blood tests are not
completed. However, in telemedicine technology, these
data are supplied by the patient himself and sent
to the doctor. Thus, doctors can access all the data
they need to make a diagnosis without waiting.
telemedicine has some drawbacks. We have stated above
that the most beneficial aspect is that it can provide
quality medical services to third-world countries
and rural regions. The problem is that this technology
is hardly ever used in these regions. Statistics
show that telemedicine technology is used the
most in the United Kingdom, Scandinavia, North America
and Australia. These are the countries that already
have access to quality medical services. Third-world
countries are not included in this list.
of the reasons for this is that some devices required
for telemedicine (such as blood glucose meters that
can connect to the internet) are very expensive. So,
in order to benefit from telemedicine technology,
you must live in a country that can offer advanced
technology at affordable prices. Otherwise, you are
just videoconferencing with a doctor, and the benefit
you can get from it is very limited.
also has some diagnostic difficulties. Some diseases
can only be diagnosed with a physical examination.
So the doctor has to touch you to understand the problem
- it isn't enough just to listen to you. Likewise,
it is not possible for the doctor to admit you to
the hospital and follow up: you have to do what the
hospital should do yourself.
these disadvantages, telemedicine is an impressive
and exciting technology. As technology develops, becomes
widespread and cheaper, it will begin to be used in
all countries of the world. Fast connections such
as 5G will even make it possible for doctors who control
robotic devices remotely to perform surgery from their
homes. In other words, we may be witnessing a medical
revolution right now. Telemedicine is a technology
with a bright future.