Since the COVID-19 crisis, life looks very different for most Americans. In an effort to stop the spread of the virus and keep people safe, families are following orders to stay at home. These measures have forced work, school and even healthcare to take on a virtual platform. When it comes to your health, however, you can trust that virtual or “telemedicine” visits can effectively address a wide range of issues, including those that involve your skin.
At Olansky Dermatology Associates, we are adhering to CDC guidelines by only seeing emergency patients in the office and offering virtual dermatology services for all other patients. When it comes to the skin, our physicians are exceedingly equipped to diagnose and treat a wide range of issues and conditions by “meeting” with our patients online. However, there are some ways to improve your tele-health experience and get the most out of your virtual experience with our physicians.
Preparing for Your Virtual Appointment
There are several things you should do before your tele-health appointment to ensure it is successful, including the following:
Check Your Equipment
You’ll need a smartphone, tablet or computer for your tele-health visit. Be sure you know how to operate the device camera and microphone. It is important to check the battery life of your equipment as well close all other windows and apps on your device that you are not using to ensure your virtual platform is operating at top speed and quality.
Prepare Your Space
This is important. You’ll want to create a space and environment that mimics an actual exam room as closely as possible, which should include special attention to aspects like privacy and lighting.
- Privacy. Choose a room that is away from distractions, background noise, etc. This may include going in a bedroom behind closed doors or wearing a headset if necessary. Turn off TVs or radios around you and consider having your pet near you if they are likely to bark when out of your sight. It is a good idea to give other members of your household a heads up about your telehealth appointment so that they can limit interruptions and noise for you.
- Lighting. When it comes to virtual skin care, it is critical that the lighting of your space is adequate. Avoid dark rooms but also be mindful of a bright window behind you that could make your image look dark or distorted.
- Focus. After preparing your private and well-lit space, make sure your device (smartphone or laptop) is on a solid surface and at eye-level. Avoid moving around during your visit, as this can distort your camera image and make it more difficult for our physicians to provide accurate and focused care. Please do not conduct your telemedicine appointment while driving a car. Not only can this be distracting and unsafe, but your physician may ask you to change positions or show a certain area of skin during your visit. Lastly, avoid answering texts, emails or phone calls during your telemedicine appointment. Tele-health works most efficiently when there is focused attention from both patient and physician.
Felt I could almost touch Dr. Ganz! The picture was so clear & audio was perfect. I feel this is a time saving measure for the doctor and patient. Certainly more convenient. I would definitely do this again!
Schedule Your Virtual Skin Care Appointment
At Olansky Dermatology, we know that we are living in an unprecedented time that can be very difficult to navigate. However, please know that while you may feel isolated, you are not without access to your trusted physicians. Our tele-health appointments are easy to schedule, and it is the next best thing to seeing our patients in person. For more questions about telemedicine at Olansky Dermatology or to schedule your virtual session, please give us a call today!