Video Consultations

Biokinetics online consultations using telehealth

Telehealth for Biokinetics Neil Hopkins Biokineticist Cape Town

Exercise rehabilitation and telehealth:

If you are feeling confined during the lock-down and you want to work on unresolved injuries you can contact a biokineticst or physiotherapist that you know, or someone who works in your area for a telehealth consultation and exercise programme to work on during the lock-down period. It is an ideal way to kill boredom and work on any unresolved injury issues or improving your physical health.

Context:

The World Health Organization (WHO) defines eHealth simply as the use of information and communication technologies for healthcare [1]. Telemedicine is a subset of eHealth and is the practice and delivery of healthcare over a distance using information and communication technologies [1].

Telemedicine is defined in a similar manner across different countries and regulators [2] It is seen as a medical service provided remotely via information and communication technology [2]. It is important to realise that telemedicine should be understood as another way of providing healthcare, rather than as a distinct medical service in its own right [2].

According to the HPCSA (Health Professions Council of South Africa) booklet 10: telemedicine involves secure videoconferencing or similar forms of technology which enable healthcare practitioners to replicate the interaction of traditional face-to-face consultations between healthcare practitioners and the patient [3]. These guidelines were framed in a manner where the communication would involve one patients and two practitioners (one remote and one with the patient).

Based on the latest communication from the HPCSA the terms outlined in the Booklet 10 need to be revised. “Telemedicine” has been replaced with “Telehealth” which includes amongst others, Telemedicine, Telepsychology, Telepsychiatry, Telerehabilitation, etc., and involves remote consultation with patients using telephonic or virtual platforms of consultation [4].

Due to the COVID-19 lock-down in South Africa the HPCSA has relaxed some of the previous restrictions imposed in booklet 10 preventing direct telehealth between patient and practitioner. The updated communication received from the HPCSA indicates:

  • Telehealth should preferably be practised in circumstances where there is an already established practitioner-patient relationship. Where such a relationship does not exist, practitioners may still consult using Telehealth provided that such consultations are done in the best clinical interest of patients.
  • Although practitioners may charge fees for consultations undertaken through Telehealth platforms, the HPCSA strongly cautions against practices that may amount to over-servicing, perverse incentives and supersession.
  • Where practitioners are in doubt whether a telehealth consultation will be in the best interest of the patient, they are encouraged to advise patients to present themselves for a face-to-face consultation to seek assistance at a health care facility closest to them.
  • These updated guidelines are only applicable during the COVID-19 pandemic. The HPCSA shall, soon after the end of the pandemic, inform practitioners of when this guidance will cease to apply.

Neil Hopkins Biokineticist telehealth booking form:

If you would like to make a booking for a telehealth consultation please can you complete the information below. You will then be sent further information with regards to times, duration of the consult, cost of the consult and the platform for the consult.

Terms and conditions:

Consent to telehealth: Biokinetics telehealth

Payment:

Payment can be made using the following link: Neil Hopkins Biokineticist SnapScan

[1] B. A. Townsend, R. E. Scott and M. Mars, “The development of ethical guidelines for telemedicine in South Africa,” South African Journal of Bioethics and Law, pp. 19-26, 2019.

[2] Europe Economics, “Regulatory approaches to telemedicine,” Europe Economics, London, 2020.

[3] HPCSA, “HPCSA,” 2020. [Online]. Available: https://www.hpcsa.co.za/?contentId=0&menuSubId=18&actionName=Core%20Operations.

[4] HPCSA, Email communication from HPCSA 26 March 2020: COVID-19: HPCSA Healthcare Practitioner Guidelines, HPCSA, 2020.

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