Video Consultations

Real-time virtual consultations using modern communications technology has proved to be a crucial tool for delivering and improving healthcare in the recent years.

Since its invention in 1876, Alexander Graham Bell’s first recorded telephone call was for medical help after he spilt sulphuric acid on himself. In November 1887, at the height of a scarlet fever epidemic in London, the medical journal The Lancet recognised the usefulness of the telephone in isolating fever patients, being comforting and curative and “materially lessening the fatigue and the risk of infection” (‘The telephone in medical treatment’, The Lancet, 5 November 1887, pg. 927)

Nowadays in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic and the risk of second waves, the number of face-to-face clinic appointment slots have been reduced to protect patients and healthcare professionals by allowing social distancing and reducing the need for patients to travel and be exposed to hospital and clinic environments.

The BMA (British Medical Association) and the NHS-X are encouraging the use of videoconferencing https://www.bma.org.uk/advice-and-support/covid-19/adapting-to-covid/covid-19-video-consultations-and-homeworking

Structured and regulated remote consultations have also been endorsed by the Royal College of Physicians and the Royal College of Surgeons for more efficient initial investigations and management, and alternative models for monitoring and managing patients. https://www.rcseng.ac.uk/coronavirus/recovery-of-surgical-services/tool-4/

The most salient benefit that virtual care offers is convenience. Instead of traveling to and from a hospital, clinic or other healthcare facility to meet a clinician, virtual visits empower you to confer with our specialist Surgical and Nursing Team from the comfort and safety of your own home.

Video consultations have several benefits:

  • Ability to communicate, interact and share relevant documentation with our Team from your home, eventually involving your dear ones, regardless the geographical distance or barriers
  • Having timely second opinions (we will facilitate the transfer of medical imaging and documents from other hospitals)
  • No need to travel or use public transport
  • Reduced exposure to hospitals and other patients
  • No need to re-arrange caring commitments and better access into services

First Appointment

Collecting your recent and past medical history is the most important part of the diagnostic process. We will go through your personal and family medical history, identifying the relevant information with the view of reaching the correct differential diagnosis.

During our video-consultation we will review in details any existing documents, clinic letters, diagnostic imaging. You may be asked to show on video the affected part of your body (e.g. wounds, varicose veins, aching limb) and perform basic physical tests.

Video-consultation will allow us to thoroughly discuss in plain language, the physio-pathology, the natural history and possible implications of your condition. Sharing electronic information resources (e.g. didactic Power Point presentations) will facilitate the understanding of otherwise complex medical conditions.

For these reasons, our video consultations slots are exceptionally long, between 30 and 45 mins. 

Video consultations may NOT fully replace the role of face-to-face assessment. Further vascular physical examination and/or diagnostic imaging (e.g. Ultrasound Duplex scan, CTA, X-ray) may be necessary following our remote consultation. You will then receive an appointment for your scan with no further delay.

If you are insured please ensure that your insurance company has given authorisation for your scan.

Follow up

Video consultation is the ideal setting to:

  • monitor and discuss the progress of your vascular condition and wound healing
  • review in details the findings of your scan (vascular imaging)
  • elaborate together the most appropriate treatment plan (conservative management vs. surgical options), including the associated risks and benefits
  • optimise medical and pharmacological therapy
  • offer further advice regarding your ongoing community wound care and management and specific instructions to your District or GP practice nurses

Second Opinions on Vascular conditions and Wound Care

  • we will thoroughly review all your previous medical documentation and scans
  • go through a differential diagnosis process and re-formulate a correct diagnosis
  • we will facilitate the transfer of relevant clinic and/or discharge letters, scans and blood tests from other hospitals

After a video-consultation you and your GP will be sent a clinic letter confirming the details of the consultation and just as we do for face-to-face consultation.

To guarantee a good and effective telephone consultation our team will triage your GP referral and available medical documentation to assess whether or not a video-consultation is appropriate and safe in your specific case.

Virtual consultations should generally not be recommended when: (acc. to the Royal College of Surgeons):

  • you have high-risk or urgent condition which may need a physical examination or when a close visual examination of an area may be more appropriate
  • the patient’s mental state is unsuitable for a virtual consultation (e.g. dementia, learning difficulties)
  • you are unable to use remote technology to communicate, and you cannot be supported to do so by a carer.
  • there are safeguarding concerns.

Even in these cases however, remote triage can be arranged before the face to face consultation.

Following the initial triage of your GP referral, our Team will confirm the suitability and appropriateness of the video consultation.

  1. Prior to our video consultation further instructions will be sent to you by email or communicated to you in person, including:
  • a self-explanatory, basic Vascular self-assessment tool (baseline arterial circulation)
  • how to take detailed photographs of your limbs (or wounds) that will be used to identify any clinical sign of venous or arterial insufficiency

These will be thoroughly discussed during our consultation.

  1. Please send us by email all the relevant medical documentation
  • GP and clinic letters
  • hospital discharge letters
  • ongoing wound care plans from your community nursing team
  • reports of your previous scans (X-ray, CTA, MRI, angiograms)

we can facilitate the transfer of imaging from other UK or international hospitals

If you are insured please make sure your insurance company has authorised your appointment with us. Most insurance companies are allowing and encouraging video surgical consultations.  We will need your insurance details and authorisation code.

Please test out your computer or phone equipment prior to your consultation and choose a quiet room for your consultation with a light source in front of you so we can see you clearly. The room you choose needs to be private and large enough for you to be examined.

We will be conducting our video consultations via Zoom.

You will receive an email invitation with the details and the link to join the Zoom Meeting. You will be prompted to join the video-call directly on your device (personal computer, tablet or smartphone) simply by clicking on the join link, without the need to download any additional software in advance.

Zoom will allow us to exchange electronic documents either by sharing the desktop or sending attachments.

Self-pay rates

First Video Consultation £250.00
Follow up Video Consultation £120.00

Self-pay rates

First Video Consultation £250.00
Follow up Video Consultation £120.00

OPENING HOURS

Monday – Friday 8:00 – 17:00
Saturday 9:00 – 12:00
Sunday

+44(0) 1892 882770

vascularwoundcare@gmail.com

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