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Serving patients in a pandemic – the rise of telemedicine in urogynecology


Obstetrics & Gynecology International Journal
Vandna Verma,1 Dina El-Hamamsy,2 Hayser Medina Lucena,3 Ashish Pradhan,4 Ivilina Pandeva5

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Abstract

Introduction: COVID-19 pandemic led to changes in healthcare provision across the NHS with large-scale implementation of telemedicine. We aimed to evaluate the feasibility, acceptability, patients’ convenience and satisfaction of telephone clinics in urogynecology during the initial stages of the pandemic.
Methods: All consented patients scheduled for phone clinics were included. Descriptive statistics were used to analyse quantitative data and inductive thematic analysis for free-text comments.
Results: 101/109 (93%) patients completed the survey. Median age (interquartile, IQR) was 60 years (IQR 21.5) and median consultation duration was 16 minutes (IQR 8). 33/101 (32.7%) were new cases and 13/101(12.9%) were tertiary referrals. To facilitate face-to-face appointments, 100/101 (99%) patients required transport and 30/101 (29.7%) needed time off-work. 98/101 (97%) of the patients were happy or very happy with phone consultation, with 91/101(90.1%) scoring 8-10 on Visual Analogue Scale (VAS).
Conclusion: Urogynecology phone clinics are feasible, acceptable and convenient with high level of patients’ satisfaction. Robust studies are required to evaluate the feasibility of integrating telemedicine into routine urogynecology practice.

Keywords

telemedicine, telehealth, COVID-19, consultation, urogynecology, patients’ satisfaction

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