In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, many dental clinics in Etobicoke, Ontario have either closed or reduced operations to help flatten the curve. While every clinic is doing its part to help in situations phone lines and email are the only modes of safe communication. But phone lines or any other similar conventional method of communication seems to be ineffective in running a commercial business like an Orthodontics specialist Etobicoke dental clinic. They have their restrictions and constraints too. For a dentist to diagnose a certain problem properly physical examination is very important but even more important is face-to-face interaction. Phone lines and email do not provide a face to face contact and a practitioner can miss out on the minute details like an expression of pain, feelings, and facial expressions, etc.
Virtual consultation using technologies like video conferencing, video chat, remote screen sharing, and video calls fill up the gap that phones and email miss. Virtual consultation has been an enabler for many clinics. Keeping in business with COVID measure is possible using these technologies especially for a dentist in Etobicoke. While it is been a great help to clinics many patients have raised some concerns regarding ease of use. Many patients who are not very tech-savvy or older patients find it difficult to use video consultation as they have a problem operating digital equipment. Vision, hearing issues and touch makes things difficult for a certain set of people.
These are the benefits of having a virtual consultation.
Super Convenient – Between work, life, and everything else, it can be tough to make time to get to the clinic or it may not be simply possible or allowed. With a virtual consultation, you can start your consultation from anywhere. Fill out the online form, schedule a consultation, and pay online.
Social Distancing – Social distancing is so important for flattening the curve. Virtual consultations are online and there is no physical interaction. Hence they help keep patients, the dentist, and the staff safe.
Information gathering – Not everything needs physical examination. There many ailments or problems that can be solved by gathering some relevant information from the patient. Just a glimpse of the face or the broken tooth can help decisively whether to call in a patient for physical examination or not. It helps in gathering information even before you start any kind of treatment.
Simple Process – The whole virtual consultation process work in a very simple way. It pretty much the same as it works out in the clinic. A patient drops in a message with details about themselves and their problem. The clinic arranges for a call, or video call to gather some problem-related issues, insurance information, and prepare a summary for the dentist. Then the dentist can call I get some technical details and decide if the clinic needs to call a patient in for diagnosis or treatment.
Prescription and treatment – Of course a dentist cannot treat a patient over a phone call, it’s just not possible yet. But the keeping physical contact to a minimum a lot can still be managed over a virtual call. A generic prescription can be issued following a video call. It’s easy for a dentist to decide if there is a need to call the patient to the clinic for further diagnosis or arrange a visit for treatment or is there a blood test required. It is also easy for patients to approach the dentist and come in contact virtually. A face to face conversation with the expert is quite a stress-buster in some cases.
Orthodontic issues like implants, broken teeth, miss-aligned teeth, braces, etc are something that needs physical contact as the dentist needs to visually analyze the patient. Virtual consultation options like video calls help fill up the gap created by social distancing measures. It might not be a complete solution, but it sure gets things moving rather a complete standstill. Virtual consultation is sure going to become a norm in the dental industry in the future.