Over the last several years, working virtually has skyrocketed. It is estimated that 66 percent of American employees do their jobs remotely, at least part-time, with 36.2 million calculated to be working off-site by 2025. The medical field is no exception; with the adoption of telemedicine, more and more providers are finding themselves working from their residences and treating patients just as effectively.
While these practitioners may have traded the office for the comforts of home, the majority find that being remote benefits themselves and their patients by being able to choose their own hours and give their patients added focus. So, what does the average day of a telemedicine provider look like?
The day begins
Of course, there are several types of telemedicine professionals out there. From general practice doctors to specialists to nurses, everyone’s schedule is going to look slightly different. However, providers usually start their day settling in their office or another quiet environment. In particular, virtual practitioners must also have a positive webside manner to begin, including wearing the proper attire, ensuring the lighting is just right, securing an appropriate backdrop, and testing the camera. After these things have been confirmed and the provider has connected online, appointments will begin.
How does it work?
Patients can be located either in their homes or in another medical facility. In these circumstances, telemedicine is often used when the patient needs to see a specialist or the in-person staff needs assistance with an overflow of cases. If working in conjunction with a hospital or clinic, part of a telemedicine provider’s responsibility is functioning with the in-person clinicians. They will start by asking questions, recording patient histories, and observing the patient’s demeanor. They then may ask the in-person clinician to assist with routine examinations, administer tests and report results back through the screen. The online doctor can escalate care for more complex cases, prescribe medications, coordinate treatment plans, and schedule follow-up appointments if necessary. After the visit is complete, the provider will most likely provide feedback to others involved with the patient’s care.
Besides having virtual consults with patients, a telemedicine provider’s day is not that different than one working in person. They may spend time off-camera reviewing digital images and documents, consulting with other health professionals on treatment plans, forwarding information about their patients to specialists, or following up with patient monitoring.
A schedule on your terms
While a provider may decide to become a virtual practitioner for many reasons (reaching more patients, less canceled appointments), one of the main benefits is the flexibility of working remotely. Hours for telemedicine professionals can vary quite significantly, from traditional 9 to 5, on-call, 24-hour shifts, overnight, and weekends, but many telemedicine companies will allow their providers to pick a schedule that works best for them. When healthcare professionals have control over their time and can work from the comfort of home, it brings about a better work/life balance – something that many in the medical field struggle with daily. On the other hand, some physicians take on telemedicine positions in addition to their in-person assignments in order to bring in more income or sharpen their skillset.
Becoming a telemedicine provider is easier than you think
If a day in the life of a telemedicine provider sounds like something you may be interested in, check out how to become part of the VirtualMed Staff team. We help medical professionals throughout the country provide quality care, bring in more revenue, and maximize earnings while maintaining a work/life balance.
If you'd like a custom telemedicine solution for your hospital, get started with a consultation today!