Dermatologist can make appointments via video conference

Friday, January 27 2012

Advances in video conferencing technology that have allowed individuals to connect across distances with high quality live video have led to the exploration of telemedicine in healthcare. With the ability to hold real-time online meetings, specialist physicians can treat patients who live far away or in rural areas.

At the University of California, Davis Health System dermatologists have found that live consultations using video conferencing technology can improve diagnosis and treatment for patients from a distance. Through interactive conversations and the ability to capture pictures, dermatologist are able to learn a client's history and assess skin conditions.

"Telemedicine for dermatology patients is a great tool in dermatology because skin conditions can be readily examined in digital still or video images," said April Armstrong, the study's senior author. "... It enables us to bridge the big care gap for those people who don't have easy or convenient access to a dermatologist."

Researchers at UC Davis say that telemedicine - the use of video conferencing technology for consultations and diagnoses - is becoming more common among practitioners as a way to reach patients in outlying communities who might not otherwise have access to treatment. Dermatologists and other specialist physicians can invest in web conferencing services to provide patient care from a distance.