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During the visit

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Share your screen: Some telemedicine web apps may prompt you to share your screen to start the video chat.

Have support information: In most cases, you shouldn’t need to contact the support team about issues. But technical problems do come up sometimes. A good telemedicine solution is to always have a support team on hand to help you. Write down the support team’s number and place it somewhere easily accessible in your workspace. You may also want to add the number to your phone contacts so that you always have it on you. Share the number with your other staff as well, so that they can help you coordinate problems or questions as they come up. 

Have the patient’s history: Have the patient’s medical history on-hand, whether that means having the EHR pulled up, or the paper records in front of you. 

Follow same clinical guidelines: You know the drill. Even if you can’t do a physical exam, you can ask good questions and take a thorough history of present illness. While technology and interaction are different, the key clinical guidelines apply to a virtual visit the same way as a physical appointment. 

Stay Engaged: Show you’re engaged in the visit, making eye contact with the patient and maybe nodding along to show you are listening. If you need to take notes as the patient is talking, let them know that you’re doing so and ensure them you want to make sure you’re documenting the visit adequately. This tip is crucial since you’re not physically in the room with the patient. 

Explain Next Steps: Once the visit’s over, thank the patient for doing a virtual visit and explain what they need to do next (this could be picking up their electronically prescribed medication from their nearest pharmacy, or scheduling a follow-up appointment in the next month). This is also a good opportunity to ask the patient what they thought of the virtual visit process if this was their first time. With that feedback in hand, you’ll continue to make your virtual visits more successful!