Dr. Bradford Patt, MD and the team at Houston Center for Facial Plastic Surgery (HCFPS) are committed to ensuring the well-being and safety of our employees, clinicians, and patients always, but particularly because of the recent concern and outbreak of the COVID-19 virus. As such, we have added the safety and convenience of telemedicine to our practice.
Why Virtual Consultations & Appointments Are Beneficial
When you have questions concerning your health or are feeling sick or a little bit under the weather, traditionally you'd schedule an in-person visit with your primary care doctor. You might even rush over to the urgent care clinic in after-hour situations. However, with the recent outbreak of COVID-19, for your safety and that of healthcare providers, medical appointments and consultations of all kinds are now being brought online.
Telemedicine services provide you with an efficient alternative to an in-person office visit for follow-up assessment after a plastic surgery procedure. With telemedicine services, you will continue receiving medical advice, all in the comfort of your own home, including from Dr. Bradford S. Patt at Houston Center for Facial Plastic Surgery.
What is Telemedicine?
Telemedicine is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as "healing from a distance." Telemedicine provides you with the option of receiving medical treatment or consultations without having to schedule an appointment with the doctor or pay a visit to their office for health services.
Through telemedicine, you're provided clinical services without an in-person visit through the use of electronic software and communications. Telemedicine technology is often used for:
Management of disorders
Many other clinical services
This can all be provided remotely through a secure audio and video connection.
Telemedicine enables you to discuss medical issues, symptoms, facial plastic surgery goals, and more with Dr. Patt in real-time. Through telemedicine services you can:
Obtain a diagnosis
Learn the different options of treatment
Be shown hands-on tasks like removing sutures and changing dressings
Obtain a prescription
How Does Telemedicine Work?
Patient care is being transformed by telemedicine in various ways, particularly within the plastic surgery scope:
It allows for face-to-face consultations and quicker diagnosing and treatment regarding a problem requiring reconstructive or aesthetic surgery.
It offers simple access to Dr. Patt if you're having difficulty making it to his office because of your business schedule, transportation or mobility issues, illness or if currently because of COVID-19.
It offers a simple way to obtain a second opinion in the same practice before you move forward.
It provides you with the added convenience of total privacy.
Telemedicine provides capabilities that allow Dr. Patt to work virtually with his patients. This is particularly valuable with plastic surgery. Is there something that doesn't feel quite right after a recent procedure you had? Are you worried about healing? Is there a facial plastic surgery or hair restoration procedure you’re considering? Now you can voice your concerns or aks those questions to Dr. Patt through your tablet or smartphone through a one-on-one, live conversation where you not only talk about your concerns, but also show him.
Telemedicine makes dialogue and follow-up with Dr. Patt more convenient and realistic than having to drive across town, schedule several office visits or try to describe a concern you have over a voice answering machine.
Does Insurance Cover/Pay for Telemedicine Services?
Generally, the answer is yes. While there are more progressive ones than others, today many private health insurance providers and state legislatures are recognizing and acknowledging telemedicine's potential for reducing costs and keeping patients healthier. As such, most are covering telemedicine services just as they would for in-patient face-to-face visits.
Federal and state laws impact insurance and telemedicine coverage. Insurance company policies do as well. Health insurance companies are committed to contributing to the prevention of the COVID-19 spread and embracing telemedicine. The federal government is even observing how telemedicine may be used under Medicare more broadly.
How to Schedule a Telemedicine Appointment with Dr. Patt?
Here's how you can make an appointment:
Register and schedule your appointment: You can register online and schedule your appointment through any electronic device with access to the Internet. Just go to www.redimd.com, use the code provided to you, and a password you've created to log in.
Select the date and time of appointment: You can choose the day you want to make your appointment and which medical provider you'd like to use. Then select an available time that works for you best.
Medical ailment and history: You complete your medical history on the provided form at the time you schedule your appointment (or before if that's more convenient) and enter your reason for your visit.
Payment information: You then enter your payment information and you're done.
What's Involved in the Pre-Appointment Check-In?
You'll go to the virtual clinic room about ten minutes before the time of your appointment. While in the clinic room, you'll log in and update your medical profile through the clinic room PC. You'll then take your vitals (pulse, blood pressure, and temperature) prior to your appointment and enter your vitals numbers. When you're done, you'll log onto the provided webcam link for your appointment.
What's Involved in the Doctor's Appointment with Dr. Patt?
During your appointment:
Your appointment starts and Dr. Patt joins the webcam link.
You'll discuss your ailment, follow-up information, or goals with Dr. Patt. The webcam will allow you to see and speak with one another in real-time face-to-face, allowing for instantaneous dialogue back and forth.
If during your appointment Dr. Patt needs to check your heartbeat or lungs, there's an electronic stethoscope that allows that. He'll instruct you how to use the stethoscope.
Dr. Patt will provide you with a diagnosis and go over a treatment plan with you.
Dr. Patt will order lab work and/or prescriptions if necessary. RediMD will then order the lab work or prescriptions. Your prescriptions will be phoned into your choice of local pharmacy.
How Does the Payment Process Work?
For insurance billing and copay, RediMD will charge you for your co-pay, and bill your insurance for your appointment. If you don't have coverage, you'll be charged directly for your visit.
Book Your Telemedicine Consultation
Dr. Patt and the rest of the team at Houston Center for Facial Plastic Surgery values your health and safety above everything else. We're making changes in how we provide you with the quality healthcare you need during this rapidly evolving crisis by transitioning many of our appointments to telemedicine. This is to ensure your safety. We appreciate your patience and understanding during these troubling times. Book your telemedicine consultation today.