There has been a buzz for some time about the telehealth rise in behavioral health. Telemedicine is becoming quite valuable in the digital world as a way for patients to more easily connect with health care practitioners, including those in the mental health field, and it is important for everyone who works in this field to understand telehealth and its applications.
What Is Telemedicine and How Does It Work?
Telemedicine is, at its heart, the ability to meet with patients for medical consultations remotely. Using the appropriate telemedicine software, clinicians can meet with their patients through video conferencing applications. While face-to-face, in-person appointments are sometimes required, telemedicine allows a clinician and patient to overcome many obstacles that in-person meetings would require.
For example, if a patient has been seeing a therapist for a long time and now find they must move across the country but do not wish to discontinue treatment, telemedicine applications will allow for that treatment to continue.
Telemedicine for behavioral health situations can also dramatically improve efficiency on the part of the practice. The clinician can schedule as many back-to-back appointments as they like, without having to worry about travel delays, office distractions, no-shows or impatient clients in the waiting room if a session runs over.
Other Benefits of Telemedicine for Mental Health Care
Telemedicine provides myriad benefits for both client and practitioners. If you are running a growing mental health care business, space may be at a premium. You may have plenty of willing mental health practitioners and patients for them to treat, but not enough space in which to put them. With a telehealth appointment, space requirements are dramatically reduced, allowing you to provide much more care to more people in a shorter amount of time.
On the patient side, there is still a social stigma associated with receiving mental health care, and some of those in need may not want to be seen going to a mental health practice or be under the watchful eyes of those in the waiting room. Telehealth appointments eliminate this issue. They are also a great solution for those with social anxiety who are reluctant to leave the house for any reason.
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Telemedicine and EHR
Hand-in-hand with the use of digital technology for telehealth appointments is its use for record keeping. Combining telehealth with a great electronic health record system (EHR) allows your clients to easily schedule as many telehealth appointments as they need, quickly and efficiently. It also makes all the information you require easily accessible through the system.
ICANotes makes electronic behavioral health record software specifically for this purpose. You can try a live demonstration of ICANotes software here right now.
Clinical Director October has been a Registered Nurse for over 15 years. She is board certified in Mental Health and Psychiatric Nursing. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She also graduated with bachelor and master degrees in Nursing from Western Governors University.