Tags: covid-19 | coronoavirus | healthcare | telemedicine | internet

The Pandemic Changed the Way We Receive Medical Care

The Pandemic Changed the Way We Receive Medical Care
Jae Young Ju/Dreamstime

By Sunday, 07 March 2021 07:33 PM Current | Bio | Archive

One of the few good things to emerge from the wreckage of the pandemic is not having to go to the hospital in order to see a doctor — or even see him in person, for routine things like prescription renewals.

Or have him come to see you.

Hospitals are not unlike shopping malls in that they are both based on the convenience of all-in-one-place. But that model is changing. Has changed. Shopping malls are much less convenient in many cases than the computer that’s in your home, which you can use to shop without leaving your home. Plus, you can often get a better deal on what you buy, as well as saving yourself time (and gas) in the process.

Retailers and other service providers now routinely come to their customers rather than the other way around. Examples of this include tire services that send a fully equipped truck with a technician, who mounts and balances your new tires wherever your car is — rather than you having to drive to the tire store and wait while the work is done. The electric car company Tesla pioneered online sales of vehicles, which challenges the centralized, old-school system of dealers you have to go to in order to buy a car.

Similar changes are coming to healthcare, out of necessity as well as sensibility.

Decentralizing access to healthcare is one way to ease the current burden on hospitals while increasing both access and convenience for patients going forward. Paradigm Home Health (a property of ISW Holdings, Inc. (OTCMKTS: ISWH) is one of the leading innovators driving this trend.

These changes are driven by the same technological changes that have rendered centralized shopping malls relics of a time when people had no other option if they needed to get something.

The decentralization of healthcare — finding ways to provide it without relying exclusively on hospitals and in-person care for routine visits — became essential when hospitals were forced to focus on COVID-19 and on limiting the possibility of spreading it, particularly to the elderly.

Everyone is well-aware of the effect the pandemic had on routine office appointments, millions of which were cancelled as hospitals shifted emphasis on the virus even to the exclusion of scheduled surgeries — and of the difficulty getting appointments caused by the backlog this created. Also, the new inconveniences attending the protocols established to deal with the spread of the virus, which made routine doctor visits anything but.

Instead of a hospital downtown — or on the other side of town — a number of decentralized clinics spread around town that are closer to the patients. This is of particular benefit to older patients, who often have difficulty getting to the doctor’s office because of the drive - and because of the pandemic.

But it's also a general benefit in that it marks a return to a more "local" and human-scale form of healthcare. It was once the norm for people to go see their doctor just down the street, who often had his practice in his home. It wasn't a mass enterprise; you got to know the people there and they knew you. When you called, it was likely the nurse on the phone recognized your voice — and knew your history. It's a pleasant side-effect of both the pandemic and technological advances — which sometimes have a tendency to dehumanize human interactions — that in this case, the trend is back toward a more human model of medicine.

Sometimes, it's not even necessary to leave the house when a call from the house will suffice. Or rather, a Zoom, Skype, or similar "call" via the internet, which enables you to see your doctor (and he, you) without actually having to visit him.

One of exciting innovations ISW Holdings, Inc. (OTCMKTS: ISWH) is focused on in Telecare is a unique concept which provides patients with a non-button wearable device they can use to contact their doctor, visiting nurse or other in-home provider whenever they need assistance, 24/7.

The doctor is always in.

Local, decentralized healthcare hubs, telemedicine and home healthcare can address these problems, which existed before the pandemic and will not go away after the pandemic passes.

The decentralization of healthcare services can also greatly reduce the cost of healthcare, which have risen an astonishing 66% since 2010 alone.

Part of the reason for that is the cost of centralized infrastructure — once again analogous to the problems besetting shopping malls. It costs a great deal more to heat/cool/maintain (and to build) a centralized hospital as opposed to a number of decentralized clinics — and their presence also serves the additional benefit of reducing the need for huge hospital complexes, which can become smaller, more efficient and so less costly by focusing on what they do best while other form of healthcare services focus on what they do best.

The pandemic has imposed great burdens on everyone, but in a way it has also helped spur a lessening of burdens going forward, demonstrating the principle that even when things are bad, they almost always end up getting better in spite of that.

Dan Perkins is an author of both thrillers and children’s books. He appears on over 1,100 radio stations. Mr. Perkins appears regularly on international TV talk shows, he is current events commentator for seven blogs, and a philanthropist with his foundation for American veterans, Songs and Stories for Soldiers, Inc. More information about him, his writings, and other works are available on his website, DanPerkins.guru. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.

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DanPerkins
One of the few good things to emerge from the wreckage of the pandemic is not having to go to the hospital in order to see a doctor - or even see him in person, for routine things like prescription renewals.Or have him come to see you.Hospitals are not unlike shopping malls...
covid-19, coronoavirus, healthcare, telemedicine, internet
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2021-33-07
Sunday, 07 March 2021 07:33 PM
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