I am really excited to tell you that within one week, my new free, online Acne Consultation service will be up and running. I have had a dream of offering this service for a long time, as I have been offering online consultations for my Clinics for a number of years. I have been inspired by an American website called Yo Derm ( agree, terrible name ) which is offering online Acne Consultations for $59, not so much for its service, which I think is a little limited ( I believe there is a lot more to managing Acne than giving people prescriptions ), but for its resounding endorsement of telemedicine, which is the name for conducting consultations via mobile, web or email, rather than face to face.
Diagnosis and management of Acne is ideally suited to telemedicine as the physical examination is visual and can be performed almost as effectively via photography.
I am completely passionate about giving every person with Acne the opportunity to clear their skin. This blog was the start of this mission and my online consultation service is the next key step.
So, from October 17th, 2013, you will be able to email me your photos and the answers to a small number of clinical questions and I will email back to you an individualised treatment plan. My next post will have my email address and instructions regarding what information I will need to assess your case.
I have posted some information about telemedicine from the Yo Derm site, which you might find interesting :
Effectiveness of Telemedicine
Telemedicine for dermatology patients is a great tool because skin conditions can be readily examined in digital still or video images,”1 said Armstrong, who also serves as director of the health system’s teledermatology program. “Our study found real and beneficial differences in the vast majority of teledermatology cases we analyzed,” said Armstrong. “With rapid improvements in interactive mobile platforms, connectivity speed and visual clarity, telehealth services like dermatology will play a bigger and bigger role in improving the quality of care and the access to specialty services that people deserve no matter where they live.”1
April Armstrong, M.D.http://www.ucdmc.ucdavis.edu/publish/news/newsroom/6127
Benefits of Telemedicine
“(Teledermatology) represents an excellent novel approach to treatment of a huge underserved patient group. Many people with moderate to severe acne live in areas without access to a dermatologist and may not be able to afford traditional care or may not even be aware that effective treatments are available. By using modern technology, acne treatment can be delivered remotely to this population to provide significant medical as well as psychological benefits at a significant cost savings.”
James Clint Jones, M.D.
“(Regarding teledermatology) In addition to increasing efficiency, the technology is a boon to patients and primary care providers seeking consultation, particularly those in medically underserved or remote areas. Travel time to a dermatologist is eliminated and there is no waiting.”2
California Healthcare Foundationhttp://www.chcf.org/publications/2009/12/storeandforward-teledermatology-applications
“Patient satisfaction with care received through teledermatology was equivalent to that with face-to-face dermatology.”3
Hsueh, Eastman, McFarland, Raugi, and ReiberTeledermatology Patient Satisfaction in the Pacific Northwest
Effectiveness of Online Acne Care
“Delivering follow-up care to acne patients via an e-visit platform produced clinical outcomes equivalent to those of conventional office visits.”4
Watson, Bergman, Williams, KvedarA Randomized Trial to Evaluate the Efficacy of Online Follow-up Visits in the Management of Acne