What is Telemedicine?
A Telemedicine consultation is similar to a routine medical office visit, except live, interactive online video will allow you to communicate with your doctor at a distance. According to the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System, Telemedicine is “the practice of health care delivery, diagnosis, consultation and treatment and the transfer of medical data through interactive audio, video or data communications that occur in the physical presence of the member, including audio or video communications sent to a health care provider for diagnostic or treatment consultation.” Keep in mind, a phone consultation is not considered Telemedicine. Not all patient situations will be appropriate for Telemedicine.
Due to Telemedicine laws, residence in Arizona is required for Telemedicine consultations with Dr. Stephanie Graham. Unfortunately, we are unable to see patients for Telemedicine who do not live in the state of Arizona. Verification of residence will be conducted prior to scheduling an appointment. Dr. Graham is required to ask your location at the beginning of every Telemedicine visit. Arizona providers who prescribe medications via a Telemedicine encounter must follow the same guidelines as for in-person care. This means conducting a patient evaluation, gathering their history and any other information needed to make a diagnosis.
We use an electronic health record (EHR) system that has a HIPAA-compliant videoconferencing platform, which abides by health care privacy laws. The use of Telemedicine to deliver health care is an emerging area and may not be equivalent to direct patient-to- physician contact. Following the Telemedicine consultation, Dr. Graham may recommend a visit to a hospital or urgent care for further evaluation if warranted.
Benefits of Telemedicine include adhering to social distancing recommendations for COVID-19, reducing the expenses of traveling to see a physician, and helps patients receive medical care who are unable to attend office visits in person, among other benefits.