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How Telehealth Supports Disaster Relief and Medical NGOs

An important part of disaster relief efforts are the medical NGOs, doctors, specialists, nurses, and volunteers that offer their time and expertise to assist in these efforts. These organisations and volunteers treat a staggering number of patients, often with limited resources. In 2019 itself, Medecins San Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) reported that they conducted 10,384,000 outpatient consultations themselves. Adding on to that, 1,048,800 patients were required to be admitted to emergency rooms. Even with more than 35,000 personnel in 70 countries, that makes it approximately 297 outpatients to 1 personnel, without considering how many of the included personnel can actually treat patients. There are hundreds of similar NGOs doing relief work, many with varying levels of support. 

Telehealth is able to assist medical NGOs and disaster relief efforts in many ways. The most direct of which is the ability to conduct remote consultations. This can help to alleviate situations where there are not enough medical professionals to conduct work such as initial screenings to ensure that triage situations go smoothly where every minute counts. This is not the only situation where it can be helpful. Many medical relief teams work on rotation, and they don’t always have all the specialists on hand to tackle every situation, which would mean they would have to exert resources sending patients to larger hospitals. With telehealth solutions that have cross-border capabilities, specialists can be brought in remotely to properly assess the situation and assist in treatment or ratify that the patient does indeed have to be moved. 

Apart from onsite treatment assistance, telehealth can be used to relay important information quickly. Telehealth solutions are able to help in not only the pre-planning of relief efforts but it also has the ability to generate awareness for the public in difficult to reach regions and disaster prone areas. Being able to relay first aid knowledge and tailor effective safety measures to areas where conflicts or certain disaster-prone areas can not only help save lives but make relief efforts run more smoothly when incidents do happen. 

As previously mentioned, many medical professionals involved in NGOs and relief efforts work in an area temporarily or on rotation. With telehealth, medical professionals are able to continue monitoring or just keep in touch with their patients. Furthermore, patient data can be effectively, and safely, shared for following medical professionals, particularly when using a telehealth solution that is blockchain enabled. The blockchain technology would allow for immutable, auditable, and secure data management and multi-layer data encryption that keeps patient information safe and easy to track for those authorized.

Global Telehealth Exchange (GTHE) is a state-of-the-art telehealth solution that encompasses many aspects of the healthcare journey. It is HIPAA-compliant, secure, and provides worldwide access to healthcare. With access to healthcare professionals globally, and the ability to securely share information, patients using GTHE will have no problems in getting the help they need from anywhere in the world. Meanwhile, healthcare providers have greater access to other specialties for referrals if the need arises. And, as many specialties require better or quicker communication channels, having easy access to full medical records, which in full control of the patient, can help healthcare providers to diagnose and advise treatment options more efficiently. General practitioners and specialists using GTHE can easily make referrals or share documentation when needed.

GTHE offers many benefits to healthcare providers including: 

With GTHE, healthcare providers can connect with their patients seamlessly and provide a better remote standard of care. If you want to expand your medical practice without investing in expensive software, visit the GTHE website and sign up now.

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