News Column

The doctor will see you now via webcam, smartphone

May 12, 2014

WASHINGTON (AP) Welcome to the virtual house call, the latest twist on telemedicine.

It's being used to conveniently diagnose simple maladies, such as whether that runny nose and cough is a cold or the flu.

Patient groups and technology advocates are pushing to expand the digital care to people with complex chronic diseases that make a doctor's trip more than just an inconvenience.

Dr. Ray Dorsey, a neurologist at the University of Rochester Medical Center, is leading a national study of video visits for Parkinson's patients.

The Parkinson's Action Network says about 40 percent of Parkinson's patients don't see a specialist, in part because they live too far away, even though research suggests those who do fare better.

Asks Dorsey, "Why can't we provide care to people wherever they are?"

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Source: Associated Press

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