Desk Correspondent, abptakmaa, Kolkata, 16th May 2020 : The COVID-19 outbreak has changed the way we work, learn, and connect with people. Healthcare organizations are adopting technology to battle the ongoing crisis and ensure continuity in delivering medical care.
During these unprecedented times, Fortis Healthcare one of India’s largest health services providers serving 2.5 million people annually via its network of 28 hospitals, has implemented virtual consultations with the support of Microsoft Teams which is HIPAA compliant and ensures all patient information is managed privately and securely.
Indian medical laws forbade hospitals to provide virtual consultations to patients, but they had to relax the rules due to the COVID-19 pandemic. To ensure continuity in serving their patients, Fortis Healthcare worked with Microsoft to deploy virtual visits on Teams. This enables patients to connect with doctors without having to step out of their homes. It took the team at Fortis Healthcare just four days to implement Teams and start taking appointments from patients.
“In essential services, healthcare is at the top of the pyramid in the current health crisis. We went live with the system as soon as we could, and all consultations were free for the first few days. There was no question of delaying the launch of the platform” says Jasrita Dhir, head of brand, marketing and CSR, Fortis Healthcare.
To minimize inconvenience to its patients, Fortis Healthcare integrated telephonic and video consultations via Teams with their existing booking system. Patients book their appointments as usual, but they now receive a URL along with the time of the appointment. All they need to do is click on the link at the time of the appointment to talk to their doctor on Teams. Depending on their case history, patients are asked to share diagnostics or other reports securely before the appointment. The doctor sees the patient, writes the prescription as usual, which is shared with the patient digitally.
“In our endeavor to sustain our fight against the spread of COVID-19, we are bringing the expertise of our doctors to help you with any health issues right in the comfort of your home. As the proactive lockdown was necessary to fight off this pandemic, it must not be an excuse to delay any health consultations that our patients wanted to avail and, hence, is this solution. We believe that this is helpful for patients as well as their families without risking the much-needed social distancing for the patients, doctors and the healthcare staff,” adds Dr Raghuvanshi, the managing director and CEO of Fortis Healthcare.
While authorities have relaxed laws on virtual consultations to ensure people have access to doctors during the current situation, healthcare providers like Fortis hope it continues in the post-COVID world too as they see numerous benefits including making quality healthcare accessible to everyone. As we all adapt to the new post-COVID normal, maybe virtual healthcare will fit right into the plan. Publicity : Edelman.