Telemedicine what equipment?

The transition to teleconsultation has had some success, especially since the containment measures were put in place. Its use, which is tending to become widespread, could remain after deconfinement and many doctors are starting to equip themselves to meet the demands of their patients. Everyone sees this as a way to save time, save travel and save themselves from the risk of being infected by other patients. Teleconsultation is easier to set up, here's how to do it.

IT equipment

For teleconsultation to be possible, the Internet connection must be stable and with sufficient speed, on the practitioner's side as well as on the patient's side. If one or the other is in an underserved or white area, the connection will be difficult to establish and may be broken. If the teleconsultation takes place via a smartphone, the reception must be in 4 G.

Doctors can keep the computer they use every day, as long as it is compatible with up-to-date Internet browsers, such as Firefox, Chrome or Safari. It can also be a tablet or even a smartphone.

You need a microphone and a camera to communicate with the patient. It can be integrated into the equipment with which the doctor is equipped and this is most often the case for laptops, tablets and smartphones. If the desktop computer does not have a camera and microphone, just buy a webcam and microphone kit. The whole thing does not exceed a few tens of euros.

If you want to equip yourself with more sophisticated equipment, there are wall-mounted equipment with a giant screen which also allows you to store your equipment. Teleconsultation carts are specifically designed to move your equipment through your cabinet, or even from room to room.

You also have the briefcase solution available if you move around frequently. It includes a tablet with USB ports, a webcam and speakers, and allows you to store your instruments.

Teleconsultation software

The doctor must choose a teleconsultation solution that allows him to connect to the patient. There are dozens of publishers of this type of software. They can offer a system that deals with consultation alone, or a solution that integrates more complete medical software.

The price can be established at the consultation, with a cost of 1 to 2 €, or the fixed price, which can range from 40 to 100 €. Doctors who are in doubt about the best solution to choose can test software that offers free trial periods before deciding.

The care sheet for reimbursement by social security can be drawn up during the teleconsultation.

Connected consultation tools

Teleconsultation software can offer you to carry out your consultation live, by videoconference between two doctors, one of whom is with the patient and takes measurements via connected devices.

You can choose from nearly fifty connected devices:

  • blood pressure monitor
  • stethoscope
  • otoscope
  • ECG device
  • vital signs monitor
  • colposcope
  • oximeter
  • spirometer
  • doppler probe, etc.

Data security

Data sharing and storage must be completely secure. The HAS - the High Authority for Health - issued several recommendations on this subject:

  • the doctor must use secure health messaging, never his personal messaging
  • the data sharing platform must guarantee the conditions of confidentiality and security of all data, including health data
  • if the data is outsourced, the selected host must be certified or approved for hosting, storing and retaining health data
  • video transmissions must also be secure