Living in a rural community offers a quieter, more simple way of life for many people, but that doesn’t always extend to healthcare. In some cases, it can be challenging for people in rural areas to get the care they need in a timely fashion, and this is especially true when it comes to cardiac care. It’s no secret that heart disease is among the leading causes of death year after year, and people living in rural communities often have their care delayed just because of their location. In recent years, advances in telecardiology have made it possible for people in rural areas to enjoy their peaceful lifestyles and get the care they need. Here are several benefits of telecardiology for rural communities that are hard to ignore.
Getting an early diagnosis is among the most important benefits of telecardiology for rural communities. With early diagnosis, treatment can start in a timely fashion and increase a patient’s likelihood of recovery and survival. It’s not uncommon for people in rural areas to delay going to the doctor, but when telecardiology is available, they can get the opinion of a cardiac specialist when they need it for a much better outcome. Some of the tests that are performed and assessed using telecardiology include echocardiograms, venous insufficiency diagnosis, echo interpretation, and coronary CT angiogram.
Emergency Treatment for Acute Issues
Many people don’t even notice the subtle signs of a heart attack, and many people in rural communities don’t have access to sufficient facilities to treat acute problems. During such an emergency, telecardiology can be used to share and review data remotely to improve the accuracy of the diagnosis and determine if a patient is actually having a heart attack or something else. This is when time is of the essence, and using telecardiology in this way for emergencies will most definitely save lives.
Easier Access for Check-ups
Cardiac patients in rural areas that need to travel long distances to a doctor’s office or specialist for follow-ups or checkups often avoid making the trip at all. People with heart conditions often need a variety of tests and treatments to ensure everything is going well, which is why telecardiology is so effective when it comes to providing easier access for checkups.
Telecardiology allows general practitioners to consult on their patient’s condition with cardiologists and similar specialists for more effective treatment. With smooth access to cardiac specialists, underserved areas in rural communities can access a higher level of care. This is also true for patients who have been discharged following heart surgery and require follow-up appointments.
Determining the Cause of Arrhythmias
Patients who suffer from an arrhythmia can have the cause determined quickly and effectively using telecardiology. A cardiologist can pinpoint the location of the arrhythmia to recommend the best possible treatment and care. It’s also possible to determine if a patient is at risk for developing a hearty arrhythmia. If that happens to be the case, they can be monitored more closely without ever having to travel to a big city or hospital to find out.
Collaboration for Chronic Cardiac Care
Cardiac patients in rural areas that have experienced heart failure can benefit from telecardiology by its ability to enable widespread collaboration by a group of experts. key health care providers can collaborate on the diagnosis and treatment and come to a consensus to provide valuable information to general practitioners, home care nurses, or even family care providers.
Cardiac Care for Pediatric Patients
The remote diagnostic capabilities of telecardiology are particularly useful when it comes to cardiac care for pediatric patients. The last thing any parent wants to do in a rural area is to have to travel long distances to have their child looked at, but that is often not necessary when telecardiology is part of the process. Experts can consult and collaborate to diagnose the problem and determine the best course of action without causing any disruption to the family’s lifestyle.
Greater Number of Patients Seen by Fewer Cardiologists
As the population continues to get older, the demand for cardiologists also increases. For those in remote areas, the wait times can end up being fatal, but with telecardiology, more patients can be seen by fewer cardiologists, with the same accuracy and professionalism as an in-person visit. There’s no longer a need for location to be a barrier to getting the quality cardiac care that’s required.
Strengthen Doctor / Patient Relationships
Doctor and patient relationships can easily become strained when small-town doctors don’t have the necessary resources or facilities to meet the needs of the patient. With telecardiology, general practitioners can have access to all the resources they need to provide high-quality cardiac care to their patients, thus improving the relationship and increasing the level of trust.
Encourages More Frequent Doctor Visits
When people in rural communities know they can have access to the highest quality cardiac care, they’ll be more likely to visit the doctor to find out what’s going on with their health. Due to a variety of different reasons, many people in rural areas aren’t going to the doctor at all, even when they may have mild or moderate symptoms of heart disease. More frequent doctor visits can only result in better patient outcomes, as conditions and issues that may have been ignored will be addressed promptly and without delay.
Telecardiology with Specialist Direct
There’s no question that telecardiology can make a profound difference to people living in rural communities. When you work with our team at Specialist Direct, you’ll have access to a national network of American Board-Certified cardiologists to provide interpretations of a variety of different studies. This includes complete project management, training, and customer support to ensure everything is running as smoothly as it should.
Get in touch with us today to find out how we can help.