One of the hardest things about becoming unwell is the uncertainty, a feeling Bill Hussey knows all too well after he was diagnosed with a serious kidney disorder in November 2015.
“I was unsure of my condition and unsure of myself – where I was going and what was going to happen,” says Bill. When his specialist, Dr Kannaiyan Rabindranath, introduced him to SmartHealth, Bill could immediately see the benefit in being better connected to his health care team.
“When I first started using SmartHealth it was all new, and I must say, it has been very useful for me,” he says.
Bill uses SmartHealth to connect with Dr Rabindranath whenever he needs advice or to check in about his condition. “If I’ve got questions I just go to the computer and type them in. If it’s not today, it’s tomorrow that Dr Rabindranath gets back to me.”
“It is so reassuring to be able to be in touch with him.”
Most recently, Bill started taking some new medication that made him lose weight due to fluid loss – 4kg in five days. “It really put the breeze up me,” says Bill. “I stopped taking the medication and used SmartHealth to let Dr Rabindranath know.”
Dr Rabindranath was happy with Bill’s decision not to use the medication and gave him some feedback on what to do next. “Being able to have that connection with Dr Rabindranath means he knows where I’m at, and I know where he’s at,” says Bill. “It’s brilliant.”
Even when his specialist isn’t available, Bill can still find reassurance and advice from healthcare professionals on SmartHealth. Like the time over a public holiday weekend when he noticed he was rapidly putting on weight due to fluid build-up – at one point reaching 118.5kg. Using the SmartHealth’s app, Bill connected with a GP in town and informed him of his condition. The GP spent time talking with Bill, asking lots of questions and giving him a solution to try.
“It was so reassuring to have something to try until I could see Dr Rabindranath after the long weekend,” said Bill. “It was very, very good to be able to talk to someone.”
Having that reassurance has helped Bill feel more confident about his condition and how to manage it. He can’t speak highly enough of the SmartHealth service, and the people involved in his care. “People go out of their way to help. They have all been so great and the online service is brilliant.”
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.