We could not be more proud to announce our bringing video conference for patients into our practice! For a long time, distance between patients and their doctors was a big reason for less than acceptable level of care in parts of Ontario for some services.
Over the last 10 years, technology has made it possible to bring people closer, and physicians are no exception. For example, a dialysis patient who needs to see the nephrologist occasionally can now connect virtually with a hospital that owns the dialysis machine, so the patients do not need to physically travel to the hospital for every checkup.
This amazing improvement is still very costly. Some units that enable this type of doctors appointment cost between$10,000 and over $20,000 (based on what is needed for the machine). For private offices like the majority of the pain doctors in Ontario, this price was not affordable. To use this, a doctor like myself who loves to help his brothers and sisters from small cities of Ontario where the farmers and their work would actually "put bread on our tables", the technology was simply out of reach.
A few months ago, we were approached by a group who was founded by the government of Ontario to start a low cost service of consultation that is compatible with TeleMedicine. OTN.ca started by writing a secure program that would let the physician and patient connect together in a secure and realistic environment, face to face. It is true that the patients still have to travel to us for a procedure, the first consultation and all followup sessions after can be done on this TeleMedicineplatform.
If you are interested to be seen by myself or any of the other great specialists I work with, please talk to your doctor to arrange for a referral by TeleMedicine consult. Almost every hospital in Ontario has the unit and many of the Family Health Teams are equipped with TeleMedicine units.
Once we get the referral and medical history from your physician, and we receive your pre-consult questionnaire, we will book your Telemedicine consultation at a location near you and let you know when it is.
Dr. R. Safakish
Dr. Ramin Safakish, anesthesiologist and pain interventionist, is a full time pain interventionist in Allevio Pain Management.