So in order to ensure the continuity of care (and because payors paid for it) many clinicians gave up and switched to telephonic care as stop-gap measure to at least provide some care to the patients who couldn’t, wouldn’t, or shouldn’t come in because of Covid.
But telephonic care, in many cases, is no substitute for a telehealth visit. While appropriate under some circumstances, a telehealth visit (85% of communication is non-verbal!) conveys a much richer, much more complete picture than just a voice over the phone – facial expression, eye contact, body language, clothing, personal hygiene, the living environment, etc. All these factors are “data points” that clinicians can take into account when deciding on the most appropriate direction for care.
The Anatomy of a Comprehensive Telehealth TechCheck℠
TechChecks, unlike the name suggests, are about much more than just a check on the patient’s or client’s technology.
A pre-visit Telehealth TechCheck helps first-time telehealth users to become comfortable with the technology. It is also a wonderful opportunity for healthcare providers to demonstrate how much they care about their patient having a great experience during their visit.
The Telehealth TechCheck should be conducted by a friendly person with a great customer service attitude and a good aptitude for remote troubleshooting. Your highly introverted network engineer may not be the best person, nor may it be an IT help desk person that has never talked with patients.
As you can see from the checklist below, the conversation is two stages (a phone call followed by a test video visit) and covers much more than just the technology itself. Beyond the obvious, the purpose of the TechCheck is also to make sure that the patient “looks good”, i.e., that the clinician can have a great visit and conversation with the patient.
It is also an opportunity for overall customer service to ask the patient if there is anything else they may need help with – e.g., to schedule a different appointment, reschedule the appointment, etc.
The Telehealth TechCheck℠ Checklist