Doctors see cancer patients through telemedicine services

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HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - As the coronavirus outbreak impacts many aspects of our daily life the way we visit our doctor is also changing.

The ARH cancer center is piloting a telemedicine program.

Sam Bailey, ARH Oncologist, says it is linking some of the most vulnerable patients to providers.

“What this is avoiding is them having to come in contact with other people and having to go to medical offices to be seen. Especially for routine visits or we can discuss any symptoms, any problems electronically," said Bailey. “We have one of the highest-risk populations in the entire area. And so if we can keep our patients from getting infected then we can really reduce the burden on the community and the burden to the patient as well."

Whether it is through FaceTime, Zoom, or Skype, they are reaching out to patients while they stay in the comfort of their homes.

“Now the restrictions have been lifted so we can, you really use your personal devices at home. You can give consent prior to or our actual consultation when we connect with you."

The process is also going beyond the actual checkup.

"We can see the patients and send the prescription to the pharmacy. That eliminates them having to get a paper prescription.“

All of this is done with the goal of eliminating those face to face interactions.

“Medicine was heading this way before. The corona epidemic has certainly sped up our progress in this."

Officials with the hospital say to look out for expanding telemedicine services throughout the hospital on their website.

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