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SmartHealth benefits patients and practice

Putaruru-based General Practitioner, Dr Stephen Ram, has experienced first-hand the benefits of SmartHealth for both his patients and his practice.

Primarily using HealthTap with dermatology patients, Dr Ram makes use of the ability to easily and securely connect with dermatology specialists in Hamilton.

“If I’m not sure what a skin lesion is, I can take a photo with my iPhone – with the patient’s permission – and message the dermatologist in Hamilton,” says Dr Ram. “I usually have feedback and a diagnosis overnight, and can often then provide treatment myself.”

Prior to using HealthTap to connect with other clinicians, it was harder for Dr Ram to share patient information. “Emailing or sending a photo via text message isn’t great because of privacy concerns. HealthTap is private and secure, it makes it easy.”

“Using HealthTap means I get the information I need in good time and saves me referring the bulk of my dermatology patients to Hamilton. My patients benefit from less travel, saving them time and money.”

Dr Ram has also had a case accepted for global rounds on HealthTap, attracting the attention of other New Zealand doctors. “They’ve given some comments and relevant advice,” says Dr Ram. “The majority of the audience is American doctors, which isn’t always helpful, but New Zealand doctors also reply and provide helpful feedback.”

Since he started using HealthTap in February 2017, Dr Ram has noticed a significant reduction in the number of patients he refers to dermatology or plastics specialists in Hamilton. He also finds it easier to securely connect and share with other clinicians, making HealthTap a valuable resource for his practice and the people he sees.

More about SmartHealth

SmartHealth offers a FREE online platform and mobile app that allows people to access a range of health services via smart phone, tablet device or computer including:

  • Free after hours online access to doctors by video, voice or text chat (6pm – 11pm Monday to Friday, and 8am – 8pm on weekends and public holidays)
  • The ability to ask a healthcare professional a question 24/7
  • Online appointments with hospital specialists without leaving your home, if appropriate for your condition
  • Helpful checklists and reminders
  • Good quality, doctor-approved health information on topics, conditions, treatments and research.

Join SmartHealth for free at www.smarthealth.co.nz

For more stories visit SmartHealth in Action.

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