It has been said that time is money. In some instances, distance is money too! In the medical field, distance plays a bigger role than time, as patients must find the money to see a doctor; gas in the car, time off work, time in the car, time in the doctor’s office, a meal…then reverse the process to get home. Distance costs more money than many think. But with the right technology you have several options.
Technology has changed the field of healthcare tremendously over the last decade. One of the biggest of these changes is the way that technology allows healthcare professionals to offer expertise and advice to patients without their physical presence. The remote attendant or virtual attendant is one facet of remote healthcare that is helping facilities in many parts of the world lower their costs and provide better service to their patients.
The Remote Attendant
The presence of a remote attendant allows patients to get service and advice without a receptionist or information desk worker there to help. With a remote attendant, it is possible for healthcare patients to get directions to a specific area of a healthcare facility, information about their doctor’s schedule, or other details that have a large impact on their medical care.
This type of attendant service is particularly valuable for hospitals and facilities in rural areas with residents who have trouble getting where they need to be in order to receive medical attention. The problem with rural healthcare goes beyond a limited ability to travel to receive healthcare. According to the Rural Assistance Center, illnesses and lower health rates are higher in rural areas of the United States. People who live in these areas tend to be older and have a lower income and fewer physicians available to provide care. The remote attendant is one way to combat these issues by allowing patients to receive help from experts even if they cannot be together with patients.
The Virtual Attendant
Choosing between the remote attendant or virtual attendant requires an understanding of the differences between these two types of attendants. The virtual attendant is usually a computer system that can intelligently gather data from patients through a phone or Internet network.
These types of attendants are particularly important for healthcare facilities that do not have the resources available to hire the necessary staff. There are reasons why this problem might occur: a hospital in a rural area might be unable to locate suitable candidates to fulfill the job duties that a virtual attendant would take care of, or perhaps the facility simply does not have the budget available to expand their staff. In either case, the virtual attendant is able to provide quality service at a lower cost for facilities that need someone available to answer patient questions and provide direction but are unable to hire a real person to manage this task.
The Key To Virtual And Remote Attendants
Whether the remote attendant or virtual attendant is more applicable for your healthcare needs, it is important that you have a highly functional system in place to manage these attendants. With a remote attendant, you must have a fluid network available to transmit communications, and with a virtual attendant it is important that your attendant system functions when it needs to. For these reasons, it is imperative that you have the assistance of a knowledgeable AV integrator that understands your specific needs and how to meet these needs through a cohesive healthcare AV platform.
About Bob Higginbotham
Bob Higginbotham, CTS-I, CTS-D, is the Avidex National Manager of Healthcare AV. Bob has spent his 30 year career in leadership positions in the AV industry including extensive design and build work in healthcare facilities. He owned and operated a successful AV business in Texas with multiple offices in several cities where he managed a staff of over 100 employees. Bob has served as a technical consultant for a major AV manufacturer, led the technical sales team for a national video conferencing provider and provided technology auditing services for several private education facilities. He has a unique working knowledge of audiovisual technology as well as multiple certifications in audio engineering, acoustics, AV design, CQT system commissioning and video transmission systems. Bob holds a BA in communications and has recently served as board chair for a large private school. He brings his years of technical knowledge and leadership experience to Avidex where he leads the national healthcare AV team. Contact Bob at firstname.lastname@example.org