Face-to-face consultation and teleconsultation: which one to choose?

Face-to-face consultation and teleconsultation: which one to choose ?

The technological innovations that the world has known in recent years have impacted all sectors. The health field has not remained untouched by this revolution. Teleconsultation has become part of medical practice. Patients must choose between face-to-face consultation and teleconsultation.

What are the advantages of this innovation? ? What is the best choice between these two forms of consultation ? Find out more about the answers to these questions below.

Best way to fight the Covid-19 pandemic

Teleconsultation consists in carrying out an online medical consultation by videoconference. This innovation in the health sector is fully explained on the website https://www.topsante.com/medicine/teleconsultation-or-medical-consultation-online-637303. Unlike face-to-face consultation which requires presence on site, medical teleconsultation has several advantages, especially in these times when the world must respect security measures to fight against Covid-19.

In the face of this health crisis, the only consultation that guarantees the well-being of populations is teleconsultation. The reason is that it avoids physical contact that promotes the spread of the virus. Patients suffering from chronic illnesses and people with reduced mobility can stay at home to benefit from meticulous follow-up. Thus, those who opt for teleconsultation no longer expose themselves to the risk of contracting the coronavirus.

While preventing the transmission of the virus, this innovation saves you unnecessary travel.

Apart from this essential prevention, medical teleconsultation allows for diagnosis, treatment and monitoring of disease. Thanks to this remote monitoring, the use of emergency numbers is reduced. It also avoids overcrowding of emergency services.

Just like a face-to-face appointment, teleconsultation has the merit of allowing the identification of the patient’s comorbidities, the evaluation of his family, social and environmental environment as well as his psychological impact. Several other reasons militate in favor of the medical consultation.

Increased access to patients

Access to care is a public health priority. Indeed, the lack of health professionals in some areas has as an implication the long waiting times that penalize patients and doctors. Teleconsultation is an effective alternative. Just like a face-to-face consultation, it allows to establish a diagnosis, to give advice or to provide the patient with a post-treatment follow-up.

Thanks to this innovation, doctors can send secure documents such as prescriptions or test results. Thus, it facilitates the connection between health professionals and their patients. It is an excellent way to fight against medical deserts.

From now on, it is easy to have access to specialized advice. Moreover, in their global approach to care, health professionals are helped by this innovation. This last one allows to improve the care of the patient. While avoiding the loss of time for patients, teleconsultation limits the doctor’s trips home.

The doctor travels less and earns more income. In addition, it facilitates the follow-up of elderly people. It should be noted that teleconsultation is also an advantage for expatriates or people on vacation in a foreign country.

Indeed, the language or health system barrier can be an obstacle for these people if there was only the face-to-face consultation.

However, the doctor is the only one to decide on the implementation of this alternative with each of his patients. The other huge advantage of medical teleconsultation is the reimbursement of the service.

The reimbursement of the service

It is very important to know that the prices of the teleconsultation are identical to those of a face-to-face consultation. It is therefore billed by the teleconsulting doctor at the same rate as for the classic consultation. It is essential to specify that the teleconsultation can be covered at 100% for the care covered by the third party payment system.

Indeed, when the health professional practices third party payment, you do not have to reimburse anything.

When the health professional does not practice the third party payment or in case of overpayment, you have to pay the act done remotely according to the payment method chosen by the health professional. It can be an online payment, a transfer, a check… The teleconsulting doctor must elaborate a care sheet following the act. You don’t have to do anything when the care sheet is electronic. In this case, the sheet is directly transmitted to the health insurance fund.

When it is in paper format, you will receive it by mail. In this case, you must then send it by post to your health insurance fund in order to obtain a refund. Thus, after a teleconsultation carried out according to the reimbursement criteria, the patient is reimbursed by the Caisse Primaire d’Assurance Maladie (CPAM).

The reimbursement rate is 70% of the cost of the consultation. This rate is reimbursed by the Health Insurance. The remaining 30% is reimbursed by the complementary health insurance (the patient’s mutual insurance). However, it is convenient to know some exceptions to the rule of reimbursement.

These exceptions confirm the rule. Here are the cases in which these conditions are not required for any teleconsultation:

  • It is an emergency situation or in the framework of a CPTS, after medical regulation;
  • The patient is under 16 years old;
  • The doctor is a direct access specialist;
  • The patient does not have a primary care physician, or if their primary care physician is not available in a time frame compatible with their health condition.

Another advantage of teleconsultation for the patient is the security and automation of credit card payments. For the latter, all you have to do is enter your payment information before the teleconsultation.

Better time management

With teleconsultation, you don’t need to ask for a day off to do your consultation. All you need to do is make an appointment with your doctor and you will carry out the videoconference at the agreed time. This appointment can be scheduled according to your availability. You have the possibility to choose the morning, afternoon or evening. Through your tablet, your phone or your computer, you will be able to discuss with your doctor while staying at home.

The main condition is to have access to a good internet connection and that’s it.