After routine surgery, a “virtual” follow-up visit might be just as good as a traditional offi ce appointment, according to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons. Researchers found that surgery patients who had video follow-up appointments were just as satisfi ed with their care as those who made a trip to the offi ce.They also appreciated the convenience of skipping the commute and the doctor’s waiting room. Overall, patients in both groups were equally satisfi ed with their care, but the virtual group was more likely to opt for the same route again: About 79% said they’d choose virtual for future follow-ups; fewer than half of offi ce patients said they’d choose in-person visits. Not surprisingly, the virtual group liked the convenience: They avoided the biggest hassles reported by the in-person group—the commute, fi nding parking and sitting in the waiting room. Virtual visits were not always smooth, however. Around 27% of patients faced technical issues, such as diffi culty using the platform or unstable internet connections. Another complaint: It was sometimes diffi cult to schedule an appointment because doctors allot only certain hours to virtual care. Since the time of the study, the platform has been updated to address those issues.
- Business of Medicine
- Doctor’s Voice