Medical 'bad news' best delivered in person vs. video, study finds

At the Mayo Clinic Transform conference last week, their Center For Innovation announced an interesting outcome of their research done for the Connected Care initiative. Connected Care includes the use of telemedicine to connect patients with specialists; instead of traveling to see the specialist at a main Mayo facility, the patient uses the local clinic’s Cisco-based video system instead of Skype from home. One survey question was when a patient felt a video consult would be inappropriate. Their feedback? If the doctor had bad news to deliver, then it would be much better to have that conversation in person, particularly if that person lived alone at home. All we can say is that fortunately for Mayo, The Gimlet Eye’s jaundiced gaze was fortunately elsewhere. Editor Donna increasingly wonders though whether technology is substituting for, or displacing, natural empathy. Here’s an approach that anyone developing an e-visit program for remote patients needs to consider (MedCityNews)