Around 82.3% of adults visited a doctor at least once in 2020. People visit their doctors for annual checkups or when they're sick. Others go for different reasons.
The COVID pandemic changed the way people sought medical help. One of the primary changes was the switch from in-person to telehealth visits.
A telehealth visit lets someone meet with a doctor virtually. Sometimes, healthcare clinics hire a telehealth nurse practitioner to handle virtual visits.
So what is a telehealth nurse practitioner, and what do they do? Here is a guide with the answers.
How to Become a Telehealth Nurse
Nurses work in all types of settings. But all nurse practitioners need the same credentials.
There are two primary types of nursing degrees. A registered nurse (RN) license is one, while the other is a licensed practical nurse (LPN). There are also a few other types, but these are the most common.
The first step in becoming a telehealth nurse practitioner is acquiring an RN license.
To become an RN, you must complete an RN program at a nursing school. Next, you must pass the state licensing test. Once you pass the test, you're a licensed RN.
However, there are several more steps to becoming a nurse practitioner. First, most states require nurse practitioners to earn a bachelor's degree in nursing and an RN license.
After that, the person must complete a master's or doctorate-level degree. Then, they must pass the state nurse practitioner test.
Additional Skills Required
These are the steps for becoming a nurse practitioner. But working as a telehealth nurse involves a few more things. Telehealth nurse practitioners must complete courses in technology.
In addition, they must also learn webside manner. Webside manner is a phrase similar to bedside manner. However, telehealth nurses work online, which requires a good webside manner.
This phrase refers to how a nurse handles patients during online visits. It includes their demeanor, tone, and listening skills.
What Does a Telehealth Nurse Do?
Medical providers have offered telehealth services for years. But these services are more popular today than ever. The primary reason is they offer contactless visits.
Telehealth visits occur virtually. Yet, in most cases, they offer face-to-face visits. Most medical providers use video conferencing services for these visits.
They begin with patients scheduling services. Many clinics even offer patient self-scheduling services. These allow the patients to schedule appointments online without calling the clinic.
Being successful as a telehealth nurse requires a few key qualities:
- Great listening skills
- Ability to multitask
- Ability to prioritize
- Solid medical knowledge
So here are the primary duties of a telehealth nurse practitioner:
Connect the Call
A telehealth visit connects a patient to the nurse. This connection is generally through HIPPA-compliant videoconferencing software.
The patient registers for the call, and the software connects them when the nurse is ready. Also, the telehealth nurse practitioner is scheduling appointments with the appropriate clinical specialists.
Review the Patient's Medical Chart
Typically, the telehealth nurse will review the patient's medical chart before the appointment. In some cases, they'll do this when the visit begins. The objective is for the nurse to learn the patient's medical history.
For example, the nurse will look at the patient's current medication list. They'll also look at the person's previous and current health problems, ensuring the patient is educated and knows how to manage their symptoms at home.
Listen to the Concerns and Problems
Next, the nurse asks questions. At this point, the patient can explain why they scheduled the visit. Then, the nurse might ask additional questions to determine how to proceed.
This process is the same as if the nurse met a patient in person. The goal is to learn as much as possible about the patient's health issues and concerns.
Monitoring patient’s data via Remote Patient Monitoring technologies and offering medical advice to patients experiencing minor health issues.
The nurse also tells the patient if they need to return for a follow-up visit.
Places That Offer Telehealth Medicine
Telehealth nurse practitioners can find jobs in many places. The most common place is at a medical clinic. Medical clinics hire telehealth nurses when needed.
Additionally, some serve as VA telehealth nurses. Others work for hospitals and other healthcare centers.
Telehealth nurses can also work from home. Thus, they might not have to go to a physical clinic to work.
Benefits of Telehealth Medicine
Telehealth visits provide benefits for providers and patients. Here are some of the benefits for providers:
Visiting through a screen provides face-to-face medical help. But it's a contactless visit. Thus, you won't come in contact with germs, bacteria, and viruses.
As a result, these visits provide safety and security for providers and patients. You'll have a lower risk of contracting infectious diseases and sicknesses.
Access to More Patients
Medical clinics that offer telehealth visits can service more people. People who need medical services can schedule visits with clinics anywhere in the state. Telehealth services eliminate distance issues.
Additionally, many people are nervous about entering a doctor's office. They fear they might contract illnesses.
As a result, some people skip medical visits to reduce their risks. But they might attend visits through videoconferencing.
Finally, consider people who can't drive. If they can't drive, telehealth visits offer a way for them to see a doctor without leaving their homes.
Thus, offering telehealth visits also increases your patient database.
Seeing patients through videoconferencing also reduces a medical clinic's costs. They can operate with less space. In addition, they'll need fewer medical supplies.
Learn More About Telehealth Nurse Practitioner Jobs
Are you interested in becoming a telehealth nurse practitioner? Telehealth medicine is growing in popularity due to its convenience. As a result, the demand for telehealth nursing jobs continues to grow.
Contact us if you want to learn more about software options for telehealth providers or try it for FREE!