Bariatric Patient Reflects on How Telehealth Has Changed Her Medical Care
Telehealth has taken the world by storm now — during the pandemic — more than ever before. At Jefferson Health, patients and their care teams use MyChart and JeffConnect® for managing patient information and hosting video visits.
While we could tell you all about the perks our telehealth program offers, why not hear about it from a patient herself? Barbara Challender, 46, a patient of Dr. Marc Neff, MD, FACS, shares her thoughts on the modern medical platform:
1. What are 3 “pros” of using telehealth/JeffConnect?
“It’s convenient and saves a lot of money not having to travel, take time off from work, or seek childcare.
It’s beneficial in terms of time management and being able to accomplish what needs to be done (i.e., set up further testing). The time I’ve saved has not been taken for granted, especially during this pandemic, when many parents — including myself — are more pressed for time due to hybrid homeschooling.
It’s increased the ability to connect with the physicians and staff. It may sound strange, but it feels more personal because we are not distracted by other patients or people. My appointment is strictly about me. There’s no wait time and no having to sit and fill out paperwork in the office. That all gets done online before the visit.
Additionally, I’ve gotten to know some of the behind-the-scenes 'angels' as well. The Program Wellness Coordinator has been my advocate and advisor throughout this entire process. I’ve relied on her for support and advice; I don’t think we would have been as well-acquainted with passing office visits.”
2. What are 3 “cons” of using telehealth?
“I haven’t experienced many, but if I had to choose, they would be:
- The possibility of minor obstacles for people who aren’t as comfortable with technology.
- Some people prefer to sit down with their physician face-to-face.
- Some people may have Wi-Fi/internet connection issues that disrupt their appointment.
Fortunately, these have not been a problem for me.”
3. What have you enjoyed most about your telehealth experience so far?
“The Jefferson Health MyChart and JeffConnect systems are so simple to use. I feel connected and involved with my care plan at all times.”
4. Is there any part of the process that you didn’t expect?
“I didn’t realize how personalized it would be. I thought it might be harder to connect with someone over the web; however, my doctor addresses every issue and question I have; it feels like we’re sitting face-to-face.
Your care team has all of your information and experiences listed within MyChart, and they are ready to address your needs. Every physician, nurse, and dietitian I have worked with has been a wonderful advocate for me. They are informative, kind, patient, and eager to help me succeed.”
5. What would you tell someone who is about to use telehealth for the first time?
“As long as you’re determined, motivated, and involved in your care, you will find that it is an easy path for success. Follow all of the instructions from your doctor’s office and make a plan. I purchased a planner to organize all of my appointments.”
6. How do your experiences with telehealth compare to your prior medical experiences?
“Ordinary doctor’s appointments often require a lot more strategic planning and timing. Telehealth has simplified my life in a major way. It’s a huge advancement in modern medicine that has been very enlightening.”