How Slack and Microsoft Teams Can Improve Telemedicine

As a result of the pandemic, social distancing is gradually becoming a general practice in the world today. People have been advised to avoid physical contact as much as possible. Businesses and companies have been forced to establish an online workforce. Just as telecommuting is becoming more popular in the business world, telemedicine is also becoming more acceptable in the health sector.

This article waves aside the misconceptions about telemedicine and telehealth. We choose to express them as synonyms. That means telemedicine or telehealth implies the distribution of healthcare services through electronic information and communication technologies.

There are existing telemedicine tools such as Doxy Me, AMC Health, swyMed, Teladoc, Mend, etc. But Slack and Microsoft teams will create improvement as they have been proven to more effective as communication and collaboration tools. More importantly, serving as a creating a network of collaboration for health workers, patients and the healthcare facilities.  

The application of Slack and Microsoft Teams will improve the ability to practice all the types of telemedicine. Be it live video consultations, remote patient monitoring, mobile health or store and forward, Slack or Microsoft teams will create an improvement. With Microsoft Teams, you can do all at once.

You can create a healthcare channel to serve your patients better, and also accept virtual visits. 

How Do They Improve Telemedicine?

Slack and Microsoft teams are collaboration tools used by businesses for collaboration and communication. While these collaboration tools are changing the modus operandi of business, these apps are not made only for companies. Their application can be applied to improve healthcare. 

Telehealth or telemedicine has been made more comfortable and effective using these apps. The app’s features, such as video conferencing, has made it possible for the doctors to see the patient’s condition. That means that with Slack or Microsoft Teams, you can create virtual appointments with your patients. Here’s how this video conferencing feature benefits telemedicine:

  • Easy Access To Patients

These applications make it possible to reach a broader range of patients. Different patients from far and near can have access to doctors and other specialists. In case of emergencies and disasters, patients can access the necessary help within a shorter period.

  • Connects Physicians Globally

Physicians and specialists will have the opportunity to collaborate through video conferencing. They will be able to transfer knowledge and improve. Professionals and students will be able to connect with like minds. 

As a physician, you can share medical records and transfer files. You will also be able to seek opinions in between appointments.

  • Improved Medical Education

Medical students can enhance their education by connecting to virtual meetings and seminars, even if they are far from the location. Interestingly, with this great video conferencing feature, you can watch real surgery from the comfort of your home.

  • Mental Healthcare is More Accessible

Video conferencing creates a very convenient set up for doctors handling mental healthcare patients. The patients can attend therapy sessions from their homes, personally or in groups. It is safe and secured for the patients as they do not have to leave their homes.

  • Makes individual referrals faster

Remember, these applications can connect you to several specialists. Thus, referring a patient to one of them will also be more comfortable. Your patients do not need to travel far to see a specialist. They also won’t have to wait for months to book an appointment with one. 

You can share files and records with the specialist to make diagnosis quick. It saves time and energy.

Creating a Slack Healthcare Application.

Asides to the video conferencing feature on Slack, it also provides the opportunity for you to create an application to help promote healthy habits. That means that you can send health tips to your patients by creating a health and wellness app. First, you have to create a Slack account.

How to create a healthcare application on Slack

This is merely adding a new app to your slack. Follow these steps:

  • Visit api.slack.com/apps
  • Click, “create a new app.”
  • Enter the app name you prefer. And select the Slack account.
  • Then you will be given some options to add features to your app.
  • You can also recommend slack apps that are very beneficial to your patients. This will help keep them educated and improve their health status.

Microsoft Teams for Telemedicine

Microsoft team makes it very useful for keeping records and sharing documents. Microsoft teams have also created more valuable features for healthcare organizations. The Microsoft Teams patient app helps make telemedicine easier

  • It improves collaboration and communication in the healthcare system. This app allows physicians and other medical practitioners to work on a single virtualized team that works on other Microsoft office teams. 
  • It adds the ability to create multiple patients lists on one channel. The app makes it easier to note high-risk patients that need full monitoring.
  • Patients’ information is well configured for easy viewing. That means all patient’s information is sorted out on configurable columns.
  • The app is available on all platform and OS with full access to the app’s features. Also, patients can access the app through their smartphones or desktops.
  • Messages are secured. The app also allows message senders to set priority for their message. That means the notification will not stop until the message is read. This ensures that urgent messages get quicker attention.

Generally, Microsoft teams help you get your healthcare system running effectively. It makes remote consultations easier. Of course, the first step to enjoying the application is by creating a Microsoft team account. Follow these simple steps;

Visit the Microsoft Teams website.

  • Then sign in to your Microsoft account. Create one if you don’t have initially.
  • Select “Get Windows App” to download the app if you don’t wish to download the app. Click on “Use the web app instead.”
  • Once you are in, click “Sign up for free” to create a new organization.
  • Enter your email and click “next.”
  • Type in your name first and last name as well as the new organization’s name.
  • Then select “Set Up teams.”
  • Next, you can invite people to join your organization. 

Before we move ahead, let’s tell you the qualities that determine an excellent telehealth system. Things you must look out for when choosing a telehealth program. Or, what you must portray to be regarded as a perfect telemedicine vendor. They are as follows;

  • Embrace teamwork. 

It is easy to think you are a team when you work remotely. Even if you are using Slack or Microsoft Team, you should reach out to other physicians and clinicians. It keeps you focused and yields better results.

  • Be ready to hold yourself accountable. 

You must be self-motivated. Self-motivation will help you provide adequate health care services for your patients wherever they may be. Take all patients seriously. Treat them with urgency.

  • You must be willing to explore technology tools that will facilitate effectiveness. That’s why we recommend Slack and Microsoft teams for a better telemedicine experience.
  • Ask for help when necessary. 

Slack and Microsoft teams help you connect easily with other physicians and clinicians. Your willingness to ask for help will make it more practical.

Final Thoughts

Telemedicine without appropriate collaboration tools like Slack and Microsoft teams will not be entirely useful for patient care. This article has provided detailed information about how to use these tools. For easy access to patients in this pandemic, Slack or Microsoft Teams is a perfect tool. 

Willingness to try new things creates better improvements. Adopt these two applications for better results. You can reach us through the comment box below. We’ll love to hear your views.

Published 06/1/20