- Özgür Töre
As the COVID-19 situation evolves, telehealth is being rapidly adopted by organisations around the world to provide healthcare for employees both domestically and those still overseas.
In March, International SOS experienced an almost four-fold increase in TeleConsultation case volumes. The organisation has also introduced TeleConsultation in the United Arab Emirates, to now be available in 18 countries and territories worldwide . The service provides fast access to a local doctor via video, without the need to physically visit a local clinic or hospital, therefore avoiding the potential exposure to COVID-19 or putting additional strain on healthcare systems.
Dr Neil Nerwich, Group Medical Director, Assistance, International SOS, "TeleConsultation is, understandably, becoming a growing necessity for the new working environment of the global workforce. With people having to work from home and under various levels of lockdown restrictions, virtual access to fast, efficient and appropriate medical care is a must. TeleConsultation usage is growing daily, as organisations seek more ways to protect their people with access to healthcare in the current situation. Ensuring the workforce is kept healthy is a key factor contributing to business resilience and will be vital to weather these uncertain times until a return to usual business practices and health.”
International SOS has a unique global network of local TeleConsultation providers, who are selected and credentialed to ensure high quality, seamless access to care. The network providers operate in compliance with local regulation where the patient is located to deliver clinical services, with the ability to prescribe medication to patients when needed, write valid referrals for additional care or diagnostics and understand the local healthcare environment and current risk factors. Providers are typically available within an hour, and can either e-prescribe to a nearby pharmacy, or, in certain cities, arrange medication delivery.
Dr Nerwich continues, “When further in-person diagnostics or treatment is recommended, the International SOS Assistance Centre teams are able to coordinate the care plan and deliver an end-to-end service to optimise clinical outcomes and patient experience.”
International SOS was the first organisation globally to receive ISO/TS 13131 for TeleHealth services. For more information on TeleConsultation, click here.
 380% increase compared with prior 6-month average
 Australia, Canada, China, Denmark, France, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Malaysia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Sweden, Thailand, UAE, UK, USA.