Priscilla Roberson, Director Patient Access & Eligibility Services, The MetroHealth System
A new report, titled "A Telemedicine Approach to Covid-19 Assessment and Triage," published on September 10, 2020, in Medicina, a peer-reviewed scientific and medical journal, outlines protocols for assessing various patient symptoms through virtual means.
Medical experts affiliated with NYU Long Island School of Medicine and NYU Langone Health have collaborated to develop a template for remote Covid-19 healthcare delivery, including protocols for assessing and triaging patients who may be Covid-positive. The affiliation comes at a time when the need for telemedicine continues to rise. While Covid positive patients can be unstable and in acute distress requiring immediate, in-person attention, many patients can be evaluated at home using telemedicine and follow the social distancing protocols to reduce the disease's spread. However, limited guidance exists for the remote delivery of healthcare, or healing at a distance, though the need has risen significantly during the pandemic.
"Most physicians have never before practiced telemedicine, and in this new world of a pandemic, our guidelines serve as a blueprint for safe and effective Covid-19 assessments," said the report's lead author, Allison B. Reiss, MD, Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine at NYU Long Island School of Medicine and head of the Inflammation Laboratory at NYU Winthrop Hospital's Research Institute. The spectrum of symptoms in persons infected with Covid-19 ranges from asymptomatic to severe and life-threatening; the more benign manifestations can often be managed from home.
A new report, titled "A Telemedicine Approach to Covid-19 Assessment and Triage," published on September 10, 2020, in Medicina, a peer-reviewed scientific and medical journal, outlines protocols for assessing various patient symptoms through virtual means. The paper notes that these protocols are most readily applicable in settings with useful internet or phone connections. When the technology is available, telehealth is also promising for delivering care to persons living in remote areas where distance is a barrier to seeking help. The report's guidelines adhere to criteria established by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), including for assessing the clinical stability of patients.
"The rapid expansion of telemedicine in response to the Covid-19 pandemic allows physicians to safely maintain connections to their patients in a way never before achieved—whether involving Covid-related or other medical issues," said Eric Goldberg, MD, Senior Medical Director, Department of Medicine at NYU Langone Health and Clinical Associate Professor, NYU Grossman School of Medicine. "Telemedicine can also create deeper connections between a physician and patient, emanating from the personal spaces shared by each."