During the spring and early summer of 2020, our office converted to telemedicine. This means that we were seeing our clients over secure video conference. We tested many systems and settled on one that simply involved the client clicking on a link that we emailed to them. Except when the wifi connection is poor, this system works remarkably well. Once we were able to have people back in our office, most of our visits became “in person” again. We will always offer telemedicine as an option going forward because it has some distinct advantages!
In an era of mandatory mask wearing, it is nice to see your face. This works particularly well when a person has less than perfect hearing, as it is easier to understand someone when you can see their lips moving.
Your visit will take only your appointment time – no need to budget time for driving or walking, for finding parking, for getting your outside clothes on and off. If you have a 40 minute appointment at 2pm, you can do whatever else keeps you busy until 1:59 and get back at that for 2:41. Much more efficient. The more hectic your schedule is, the more you will appreciate this.
No travelling. This is particularly important for clients living outside of Thunder Bay, where travel times can be hours long. Snow days will be a non-issue – when your car doesn’t start or the snowplow went by 2 minutes before you have to leave, you just call in and change it to telemedicine. Not wanting to risk icy roads? Video appointments eliminate the need to drive.
No need for childcare or eldercare. If you have family members who need your constant presence, you do not have to make arrangements so that you can leave the house, or bring them with you to your appointment. We understand when you have a toddler climbing over you during your visit – we’ve all been there! They are much easier to distract at home than in our office. You may worry about your elderly relative falling if you leave the house – no need to leave them or find someone else to keep them company.
Even if you prefer an in-person visit, should something come up such as a sick child or a car that doesn’t start, you can easily and quickly switch your appointment to telemedicine rather than canceling it and having to find a time to reschedule.
Technology isn’t perfect, but in some cases it really does make our lives better and easier!