A significant barrier to the interstate practice of telehealth is closer to being broken down. The Federation of State Medical Boards ("FSMB") recently completed and distributed a draft Interstate Medical Licensure Compact ("Compact"), which is designed to facilitate physician licensure portability and the practice of interstate telehealth. The Compact would create an additional licensure pathway through which physicians would be able to obtain expedited licensure in participating states. As the FSMB notes in the draft, the Compact "complements the existing licensing and regulatory authority of state medical boards, ensures the safety of patients, and provides physicians with enhanced portability of their license to practice medicine outside their state of primary licensure."Read More »
In spite of the minor mishaps of my first week, outlined below, it has become clear to me that telepsychiatry can be a viable, valuable, and timely addition to our psychiatric lives and that of our patients.
Telepsychiatry, from home I begin my first week of my new job as a full-time telepsychiatrist, working for the Green Bay VA Hospital in Green Bay, Wisconsin.Read More »
Christine Kearsley contributed to this article.
In Durham, North Carolina, the child psychiatrist comes to the classroom. By telehealth. For the past eight years, Duke University Medical Center has teamed up with Durham Public Schools to export child psychiatry to where the kids are. Duke fellows in child psychiatry travel to three elementary schools and one upper-school site to offer in-person mental health services to children with diagnosed mental health disorders. To supervise the fellows, the attending physician conferences in. As Dr. Richard D'Alli, the leader of the program, explains, supervising the fellows by telehealth has opened a world of possibility.Read More »
SKYPE and similar web-based platforms are increasingly becoming a way for many physicians and other health care practitioners to communicate and interact with patients at a distance. Many telehealth practitioners in particular use web-based platforms for the delivery of care and communications with patients—especially in certain telehealth subspecialties such as telepsychiatry. The reasons are clear. Skype is essentially free—there is no charge for making calls to other Skype users, although there are fees for making calls to mobile and landline telephones. Skype is also ubiquitous. Skype alone is estimated to have approximately 600 million users worldwide, and its many users rely on Skype to communicate with professional associates, family, and friends. These figures do not even take into account users of other platforms that are proving popular with consumers and professionals alike. In other words, web-based platforms are easy to use and readily available. Nevertheless, the issue of whether to use Skype or similar web-based platforms is a vexing one for many health care providers.Read More »