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Virtual doctor’s visits on the rise as people stay inside to reduce chance of COVID-19 exposure

Updated: Mar. 20, 2020 at 11:48 AM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Telehealth has been widely available for several years, but with more people staying home due to the coronavirus outbreak, physicians are noticing an uptick in the number of virtual visits.

Novant Health has been offering patients access to providers virtually for quite some time.

Patients can reach doctors by e-visit in which they fill out an online questionnaire to address low-acuity and screening visits. They can also reach providers via on-demand video visits or scheduled video visits with their care provider.

Most recently, Novant Health rolled out TytoHome video visits. The TytoHome device allows a provider to check a patient’s heart rate or inspect their ears, nose and throat in real-time via video visit.

The four methods of virtual doctors’ visits have been widely available to patients, but physicians are noticing more people taking advantage of them amid the coronavirus outbreak.

“Especially in the last week we’ve seen a significant uptick in our virtual health platforms,” Senior Vice President of Consumer Engagement Dr. Jerome Williams Jr. said.

Dr. Williams Jr. says the increase in virtual visits may be, in part, due to patients listening to authority’s direction to stay at home and keep appropriate social distance to slow the spread of COVID-19.

“Not only for those individuals who are concerned about COVID-19, but for individuals who want to maintain social distancing. Those individuals who have scheduled healthcare visits of not a high acuity can be handled over a virtual platform,” Dr. Williams Jr. said.

For more information on Novant Health telehealth capabilities click here:

https://www.novanthealth.org/mynovant/virtual-care.aspx

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