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Although this is a time of great uncertainty and there is a significant amount of pressure on our health care system and providers, this is also a time where we will start to see the system that we know it transformed into something new and exciting. Telemedicine, Virtual Care, and Digital health applications have been consistently introduced into our primary care system over the past decade but there really hasn’t been significant changes or introductions of technology into the primary care world since the introduction of the EMRs in the early 2000’s. Virtual Care has been slowly making its way into community clinics but the recent COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the need for clinics, providers, and patients to adapt and utilize technology.
As many of you know, there is an abundance of information circulating related to all things Virtual care, from toolkits to select and implement a solution, to the most appropriate billing codes to use for virtual visits. New information is created daily and it can be difficult to keep up to date and informed on these changes, especially while trying to deliver care. Our goal is to help bring that information to you in a consolidated way. We are here to help educate and inform you and your team from the selection, implementation, and optimization of your virtual care solution. Our site provides you with a brief overview of some key considerations to discuss with your team before selecting a virtual care provider, a vendor comparison, and frequent blog posts on topics to continue to help as you find your.
In addition to the information you will find on our site, we wanted to provide a quick overview of some of the information that you may find helpful:
Canadian Medical Association
The CMA has been working to ensure that resources are available to physicians and providers when considering virtual care solutions. The CMA has a number of resources that can help when beginning the discussion on the selection and implementation of a virtual care solution. It is recommended to review the following key documents:
- Virtual Care Playbook for Canadian Physicians – which was written to help physicians when introducing virtual care visits into their daily practices.
- Virtual care: Recommendations for scaling up virtual medical services – outlines 19 key recommendations to support and expand the implementation of virtual care.
For additional resources form the CAM, visit: https://www.cma.ca/virtual-care
Alberta Medical Association (AMA) Virtual Care Resources
The AMA has put together a number of resources to help physicians and their teams during the COVID-19 pandemic. This site provides an number of resources that may assist when determining if virtual care is right for your clinic, including:
- Privacy and Security Considerations
- Billing Codes
- Essentials to get you started with Virtual Care
- Virtual Care solutions – EMR Integrated and Unintegrated Tools
- Additional resources, including: Virtual Care Toolkit which provides information to consider when implementing virtual care
All information described above can be found here.
Doctors of BC
The Doctors Technology Office has created and posted a number of detailed resources to assist in the establishment of virtual care. Key resources include:
- DTO Virtual Care Toolkit – which is intended to provide the minimal information to enable a physician/clinic to begin offering virtual care services.
- Virtual Care – Quick Start Guide – provides a brief over of key considerations when beginning on the virtual care journey.
For additional information as well as links to the resources listed above, click here.
OntarioMD has developed a comprehensive website that provides a one-stop shop for information related to Virtual Care, including:
- Overview of services available during COVID-19
- Information for patients
- Introduction webinars and FAQs for virtual care
- Overview information for various types of virtual care solutions including, direct-to-patient tools, virtual clinics available to the public, OntarioMD certified EMRs, and other resources.
To view the information listed above, click here:
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