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Madison, Wis. — Since the start of the COVID-19 crisis, UW Health has rapidly expanded its telemedicine capabilities to deliver safe, efficient and effective care to all the communities and patients we serve, whether they are in-state, around the region, or in other parts of the country.
To do so, we scaled our telehealth programs to meet the growing need for providers to see and speak with patients in their homes; rolling out a secure new video application that’s easy to use and accessible to patients on their smartphones, tablets or computers with webcams.
These video visits, which allow patients to “meet” with their healthcare providers from the comfort of their own homes, also permit multiple people to join the visits, whether they be a loved one that lives far away or other providers and specialists involved in their care. Video visits also save patients the cost and stress of travelling to and from hospitals and clinics during this time, and they are used by providers across the spectrum of care, from pediatrics to geriatrics, for simple routine visits to complex patient care.
Since UW Health first launched the video visit program in mid-April, daily video appointments have increased from 108 on April 22nd to over 1,200 video visits in one day this week. Going forward, UW Health estimates half of its 35,000 outpatient visits per week could be handled by telemedicine appointments.