Once this lockdown is over we’ll be surprised that there were some things we liked about staying home, and not just the sourdough bread.
For some, the modern-day version of old-fashioned doctor house calls could top the list.
It’s odd to hear a hospital like St. Joseph’s Health Care talk about “a silver lining” in a global pandemic, but the avalanche of virtual patient care has opened up a host of possibilities.
Last month, 50 to 60 per cent of all registered visits to the hospital and its clinics were done remotely. Before the pandemic, it was just five per cent. Translation: A staggering 1,032 daily virtual engagements, up from about 200.
St. Joe’s serves nearly one million outpatients a year. In-person appointments mean drives to the hospital often from significant distances, traffic jams, parking woes and waiting.
Along came COVID-19, and what’s happened in health care beyond the virus is a lot like what we’re seen in the justice system: a forced move online to protect both patients and staff. And like the justice system, there will be no turning back.