In an attempt to help quell the spread of COVID-19, more and more healthcare practices across the country have begun offering telemedicine services. Even before the pandemic struck, though, the popularity of telemedicine was rising thanks both to the numerous benefits that it offers as well as increasing advances in the technology that makes it possible. One such telemedicine service that has been getting a lot of attention lately is teleradiology – or the use of telemedicine in radiology.
While it isn’t yet possible for patients to undergo radiology exams such as x-rays and MRIs from the comfort of their homes, teleradiology still offers a number of advantages. With teleradiology, patients are able to have such exams conducted anywhere the right equipment is available even if the physician responsible for analyzing the results of the exam isn’t present at that location. Once the exam has been conducted, teleradiology allows for its results to be sent electronically to any physician no matter where they are located.
The benefits of this capability are multifaceted. For one, it enables medical professionals to easily collaborate with one another when analyzing the results of the radiology exam regardless of the distance between them. Perhaps the most interesting benefit of teleradiology, though, is the fact that it enables healthcare facilities to reduce their burden in the current era of staff shortages by making it possible for them to outsource the process of conducting radiology exams to third-party facilities while still ensuring that their own physicians are the ones interpreting the results.
The rise of telemedicine is a trend that is expected to continue long after the COVID-19 pandemic that accelerated it is eventually defeated. Likewise, teleradiology is one aspect of telemedicine that is also expected to only grow in popularity thanks to the benefits that it provides. By making radiology exams more convenient for patients while at the same time improving collaboration and reducing the burden of hospitals and clinics, teleradiology is something that offers a lot of promise for the future of healthcare.
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