Telemedicine appointments on the rise in Arkansas
JONESBORO, Ark. Across the country people are now flocking to their computer screen to receive telemedicine help during an illness.
The program, still relatively new to northeast arkansas hospitals, has seen a dramatic increase since the covid-19 outbreak.
Dr. Vincent Turner Jr. with St. Bernards Hospital says telemedicine is on the rise in Arkansas.
“Telemedicine is booming. Here with COVID it just took off on us,” says Dr. Turner. “What we really wanted to do was provide access to patients but the patients not having to come into the clinic. So, St. Bernard’s go our telemedicine app was a perfect solution for that.”
All it takes is the touch of a screen to see a health care provider.
Turner says before covid-19 they were seeing only two to three patients per week via hospitals go app, but now their visits have skyrocketed.
He says not only does it cut down on logistics and travel, but also limits the amount of interaction and exposure of illnesses to others.
Jessica Womble, a nurse practitioner with NEA Baptist says she’s seen an increase in telemedicine visits as well but advises that its not a fit for every illness.
“I’ve seen about thirty percent of my patients using some form of telemedicine,” says Womble. “If it is something that a provider has to use to do a physical exam on you then that would need to be seen in the office, but your common cold, sinus infections things like that can be seen on telemedicine.”
Both Dr.Turner and Womble both say this is the future of medicine, but they don’t think it will completely get rid of doctor’s clinics.