Planning your telehealth workflow
Your process for setting up and managing appointments may need to shift to accommodate telehealth appointments. You can save time and frustration by thinking through each stage of the workflow ahead of time.
- Digital Health Implementation Playbook Step 7: Designing the Workflow — from the American Medical Association
- Provider to Patient Visits Template Workflows — from the American Academy of Pediatrics
The details of your workflow will need to adapt to the platform you choose, but here are a few basics to consider.
Preparing for telehealth visits
Questions to consider:
- When you’ll be available for telehealth appointments
- How patients can schedule appointments
- How you will access the information you need for each patient visit
- Who will greet the patient first when they join the visit — for example, you may want a medical assistant to ask some initial questions before you join
- How you will support patients who have limited English proficiency
- How you will support patients living with disabilities such as hearing loss or visual impairment
- How you will support a caregiver or other person who needs to assist a patient during the telehealth visit
Tip: Consider doing a practice run with a co-worker first.
Conducting telehealth visits
Make sure to:
- Identify yourself to new patients
- Confirm the patient’s identity
- Verify that the patient’s equipment is working
- Confirm the patient’s location
- Discuss what to do if connectivity gets interrupted
- Create a patient safety and emergency plan in case of a crisis
- Ask if the patient has the privacy they need
- Keep the visit as much like an in-person visit as possible
For details about creating a patient safety and emergency plan, see:
- Patient Safety and Emergency Management — from the American Psychiatric Association
Following-up after telehealth visits
Make sure to document the visit, including the fact that it was a telehealth visit.
Tip: Consider asking patients how your team could improve their telehealth experience.