Providence Healthcare Foundation
Providence Healthcare Foundation

Godfrey Wong, Occupational Therapist and Telemedicine Adoption Specialist at Providence Healthcare

Telemedicine: going virtual during COVID-19

May 19, 2020

“Telemedicine has the capacity to improve workflows, enhance quality of care, and support better coordination and transition of care for patients,” said Godfrey Wong, Occupational Therapist and Telemedicine Adoption Specialist at Providence. “My hope is through this uptake in virtual services in response to COVID-19, both providers and patients will see continued benefits of telemedicine services, even after this pandemic is over.”

Telemedicine connects healthcare providers with patients, through a virtual appointment, so they can get the treatment and care they need from the comfort of their own home. While this is not a new service for Providence Healthcare, it is more important now, than ever before, as we continue our battle against COVID-19. With the virus’ ability to spread rapidly, there has been greater emphasis and need to ramp up our safety measures, and telemedicine is just one of the ways that Providence is doing just that.

During COVID-19, telemedicine allows access to care while limiting in-person interactions and following recommendations around social distancing. Providence is predominantly using telemedicine through the use of phone and videoconferencing to deliver and support care. This means that our patients are being treated in real-time by their care provider (physician, physiotherapist, dietitian, speech and language pathologist, etc.) to ensure they continue on their healthcare journey.

Even outside of this pandemic, telemedicine is incredibly beneficial for both the care provider and the patient. It eliminates the need for patients and their families/caregivers to travel, saving them all time, money and days off work. Videoconferencing can also give the healthcare provider the opportunity to see the environment the patient lives in, and from there can make appropriate recommendations that will help the patient with their recovery.

The way people access care is changing. With the growth of digital tools, our healthcare system is listening to how our patients want to interact with their care providers and responding by finding new technologies to support their needs. And our generous community of donors is ever-connected, helping to fund and support this evolution.

Strength is. Our staff.
Strength is. Our community.
Strength is. Providence.