During the American Academy of Dermatology conference held from February 16th-20th, 2018 at the San Diego Convention Center, scientific sessions were held for a wide variety of relevant topics relating to skin health, dermatology, dermoscopy and teledermatology services. Once such meeting focused on the importance of teledermoscopy towards delivering care to diverse populations, while summarizing valuable practice management resources and areas in need of improvement. Below are highlights provided by key speakers.
Pearls from Speakers
Mark Patrick Seraly, MD
Advancing the Field of Dermatology
Private practice in McMurray, Pennsylvania; founder and chief medical officer, Iagnosis, developers of DermatologistOnCall.com
“Direct-to-patient teledermatology is a rapidly evolving care delivery model enabling patients to have instant access to the most qualified providers of skin care. Recognizing that wait times for in-office visits are extended to beyond 30 days in many markets, direct-to-patient care further expands patient choice, promotes convenience, and reduces costs. It now allows dermatologists to offer a new service as an extension of their physical brick-and-mortar practices and keep the expertise of skin care within the discipline of dermatology, rather than patients having to go elsewhere.
The quality of care should be held to the same standards as an in-person visit. As direct-to-patient teledermatology continues to take a foothold in the evolving integrated health care delivery model, dermatologists should collaborate and promote teledermatology quality measures to ensure patient safety, continuity of care, access to in-office care if needed, and transparency to provider choice.”
Carrie Kovarik, MD
Associate professor, department of dermatology, University of Pennsylvania
“When providing quality teledermatology care, it’s most important to be familiar with the local health issues in the community [and] the available medications for the patients being served, as well as the structure of the health care system. Teledermatologists should also know what resources are available to them for working up difficult patients, including biopsies, laboratories, and in-person dermatology visits. The most challenging patients seen [in] teledermatology may require a discussion between providers, a request of additional information, and a collaborative plan, rather than a simple visual diagnosis and treatment recommendation.”
Along with providing transparent, high quality, and streamlined care, advanced teledermatology offers additional benefits for medical professionals and patients alike. For example, studies demonstrate that the accuracy of diagnosis rates through the use of teledermatology services were as high as 80%. These findings suggest that although a medical professional may not be in the same room as their patient, this not prevent them from providing quality care.
Further, intelligent dermatology software such as DermEngine build on these benefits by organizing patient data and providing smart skin analytics features in addition to its telemedicine capabilities. This dermatology EMR system allows specialists to receive overview, dermoscopic and total body images, as well as provides dermatologists with access to tools in artificial intelligence for dermatology to utilize advanced skin analytics for enhanced consultations. Combined, these advanced teledermatology services ensure the continued advancement of digital health and patient care while ensuring quality image management, analytics and patient support.
Based on the insights of the professional speakers alongside the studies mentioned in this article, it is clear that teledermatology services provide a wide variety of services to both patients and dermatologists. Examples of these benefits include cost-reduction, diagnosis accuracy, streamlined workflows, and patient accessibility. Intelligent dermatoscopy systems like DermEngine enhance this providing every step of a medical professional's practice in a centralized location- from patient communications, organization, analytics and diagnostics.
-The MetaOptima Team
Are you interested in learning more about how teledermatology can benefit your practice? Download the free info sheet today!
Original source for AAD 2018 Speakers can be found at: http://bit.ly/AADTeledermSpeakers