Telemedicine:  Enhancing veterinary medicine with technology

By April 9, 2020 EAH Blog

The American Veterinary Medicine Association (AVMA) defines telemedicine as “the use of medical information exchanged from one site to another via electronic communications regarding a patient’s clinical health status.”  Many of you have experienced telemedicine in one form or another by consulting with your own personal physician or your child’s physician.  We as a hospital have decided to offer telemedicine to our clients because we feel that it will enhance your pet’s health and add another option to interact with our doctors.  Our world is continuously becoming more connected via digital communication.  It is important to stress that telemedicine will never be able to replace the gold standard of veterinary care:  the physical exam.  A veterinarian interacting with your pet cannot be exactly replicated with remote care via telemedicine.

 

In order to utilize telemedicine, we required a Veterinary-Client-Patient-Relationship or VCPR.  We define a VCPR as a hands on physical examination of your pet in the last year.  If this has happened at our hospital, then you are eligible to participate in telemedicine!

 

By using your smartphone (Apple or Android device), you will now be able to interact digitally with our doctors via the Anipanion app.  We recommend that you utilize as many high quality pictures and videos in good light to show our doctors what you are seeing with your own two eyes.  A good history of what the problem is, the duration of the issue, and any relevant changes in diet, environment, or other variables helps us with formulating a plan.  Once the consultation is submitted, one of our doctors will review your request and respond with a diagnosis and recommendation.  In some cases, we may request additional information and even request that your patient is seen in person rather than digitally.  Medications dispensed, if needed, can be picked up at the hospital or even shipped to you via our online pharmacy.  For those owners that prefer to see our doctors during the visit, video conference options are also available but must be scheduled in advance.  This can be done via our client care associates.

 

Our doctors, client care associates, technicians, and assistants will recommend when we think telemedicine may be a good option for your pet.  In the mean time, consider downloading the Anipanion App and setting up your pet for a potential future consult!

https://www.anipanion.com/pet.html

 

Download for iPhone: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/anipanion/id1310254690

Download for Android: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.animantech.anipanion

 

>Register yourself and your pet on the app and you’re ready to submit for a consultation!

 

Finally, it is VERY important to recognize that under no circumstances should any emergency ever be submitted via telemedicine.  Life threatening injuries and disease should always be seen by a veterinary hospital or emergency facility!

 

We are excited to offer this unique service to our clients and patients and look forward to seeing your pet digitally in the near future!