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Safeguard against Skin Diseases with Teledermatology in the Era of COVID-19

September 18, 2020 | Healthcare

Teledermatology is considered to be one of the most popular applications of telemedicine and e-health in today’s advanced world. Applications of this service span various areas of healthcare management such as education, consultation, treatment, and diagnoses. The term was first coined by two dermatologists named N.A. Brown and D.A. Perednia back in 1995 while reporting the results of a teledermatology project occurring in the remote areas of Oregon. Thereafter, the field exhibited increasing developments in other rural areas of the U.S.

The global teledermatology market is anticipated to grow significantly in the coming years on account of the increasing prevalence of various skin conditions, such as psoriasis, eczema, and skin cancer worldwide. Today, the emergence of mobile teledermatology is enabling people to use their pocket dermatoscopes and smartphone adapters to click high-quality dermatoscopic images. Preliminary studies have shown that such tools are proving to be very useful for dermatologists and doctors in the transmission and acquisition of images for obtaining a second opinion by a clinician.

How is Teledermatology Beneficial for People?

  • Cost-effectiveness: It is capable of lowering healthcare costs.

  • Easy Access: It provides access in areas where geographic barriers limit or prevent a person from receiving dermatologic treatment.

  • Improved Scheduling: In areas where the demand for dermatology services is high, this technology will help in enhancing the scheduling process.

  • Highly Convenient: Patients can avoid unnecessary visits with the help of this service.

  • Reduced Wait Time: It can help reduce wait times for those patients who require urgent in-person visits and consultation.

COVID-19: Dermatologists & Patients Seek Virtual Healthcare to Prevent Transmission

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic across the globe is starting to transform the way doctors practice medicine, both in aesthetics and general dermatology. As per a report published by Steven Leon and Gene Rubinstein, in the U.S., several dermatology offices are currently working under limited hours or are closed. Patients are also worried about coming to the emergency room or their doctor’s office because of the high risk associated with the transmission of the coronavirus. Hence, they are either cancelling or delaying their dermatology visits. This factor is negatively impacting practice revenues and patient care.

Therefore, thousands of dermatologists and millions of patients are adopting telehealth services rapidly. As some patients are skeptical about the quality of virtual healthcare, many practices are using homegrown telemedicine solutions, such as communicating by email or text & commonplace video conferencing methods. According to Loretta Ciraldo, the founder of Dr. Loretta Skin Care, “I’ve closed my office to most patients. I’m calling them up and asking whether I can help them remotely.”

Nebraska Lawmakers Approve Reimbursement of Teledermatology  

In August 2020, the lawmakers of Nebraska, U.S., approved a legislation enabling payers to cover telehealth services on an asynchronous platform provided by a dermatologist. It would help them to review images of skin conditions and provide treatment options accordingly. This new law will also broaden access to quality care in the state.

SkinIO Unveils SkinIO Teledermatology App to Battle Poor Photo Quality

In April 2020, SkinIO, a provider of skin health monitoring tools based in Chicago, introduced its latest platform called SkinIO Teledermatology to help dermatologists capture high-quality photos from patients. It would help them in delivering the best remote dermatological care. One of the company officials mentions, “Because of the COVID-19 crisis, there is a greater need for high-quality photos by dermatologists to be able to treat their patients accurately. That is why we decided to develop this app.”

What Does the Future Hold?

The persistent improvement and development of telecommunication technologies has resulted in a rising interest in telemedicine. The increasing number of scientific publications is further surging the interest of healthcare professionals in the field of dermatology. The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic will help the field to grow in future. It will influence patient expectations of receiving care and care delivery. Besides, it will allow follow-up care of basic aesthetics procedures and patient education, thereby lowering discomfort of patients during the healing process.

Author’s Bio –

Name: Reeti Banerjee

Reeti Banerjee has an extensive experience in the field of technology and medicine. She specializes in writing articles, press releases, blogs, and news reports on a wide range of topics. She believes in maintaining simplicity throughout her content to provide the readers with a seamless experience.

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