Telemedicine Done Wrong

telemedicine

I am all for telemedicine but when it is done by YOUR doctor.  These third parties using “providers” are a scam. It just fragments health care even more.  And they suck.  Here is some proof of how bad they are:

  • Researchers posing as patients with skin problems sought help from 16 online telemedicine companies—with unsettling results.
  • Some of the online doctors misdiagnosed syphilis, herpes and skin cancer, and some prescribed medications without asking key questions about patients’ medical histories or warning of adverse effects, the researchers found.
  • Two sites linked users with doctors located overseas who aren’t licensed to practice where the patients were located, as required by state law.
  • The services failed to ask simple, relevant questions of patients about their symptoms, leading them to repeatedly miss important diagnoses.
  • The online clinicians—who were mostly identified as physicians, with a few nurse practitioners and physician assistants—provided diagnoses in 48 of the 62 completed online visits and prescribed medications in 31 of them; but only 10 of the patients were told about relevant risks or side effects, including possible harm to unborn babies if the patients were pregnant.
  • Patients were asked the name of their primary-care physician in 13 of the 62 visits, and only six offered to send records of the encounter to an existing doctor.

What a joke.  I do telemedicine all the time and I am on 24/7/365.  It is not a big deal because I only have 600 patients and I know them.  This crap they are peddling is pathetic.  I once saw an ex-pathologist (yes, no primary care or ER training) who was a locum working in an urgent care doing telemedicine while on the job to make extra cash.  He was just prescribing antibiotics left and right.  That is the kind of care people are getting.

Buyer beware.

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