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The Physician and Patient Experiences of Primary Care Telemedicine During the COVID-19 Pandemic

dc.contributor.authorDang, Elizabeth
dc.descriptionThe COVID-19 Pandemic, declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization March 11, 2020, affected the lives of many directly through infection and indirectly through policy changes and more. COVID-19 and its high transmission rate increased the necessity for daily activities to be conducted through virtual means-including healthcare. Subsequently, use of telemedicine increased at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and remained elevated throughout the pandemic. This study aims to reveal physician and patient opinions on telemedicine, examine the role of interpersonal relationships and communication between primary care physicians and patients in the context of telemedicine, and provide a general narrative of primary care physician and patient experiences with telemedicine since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. A review of literature covered a wide variety of topics related to telehealth and telemedicine including research-and-demonstration projects referenced above, assessment of policies, and quantitative surveys with a focus on macro-level trends rather than assessment of individual experiences and opinions on the topic. As physicians who provide first contact for people with undiagnosed health concerns as well as continuing care of varied medical conditions, primary care physicians often form long-term relationships and engage in long-term communication with their patients. Previous research has demonstrated that physician communication competence can positively affect health outcomes.1 Physician-patient communication plays a central role in effective health care delivery. Consequently, competence in communication must be regarded as an essential skill for physicians. Communication competence is defined by Spitzberg as the “impression of appropriateness and effectiveness, which is functionally related to individual motivation, knowledge, skills, and contextual facilitators and constraints.” Research indicates that judgments of competence influence satisfaction, trust, understanding, and power-sharing in relationships and in individual encounters. In a health context, competent patterns of communication are positively correlated with cardiac health, viral and immune resistance, cancer survival, stress reduction, health-promoting behavior, and overall health. 1 This study has the following aims: to evaluate physician and patient opinions on motivation, interpersonal relationship, and other related or relevant themes that arise with respect to telemedicine, to gain an understanding of the experience of telemedicine appointments during the COVID-19 pandemic from both the physician and patient perspectives, to assess the use of telemedicine as an alternative to in-person clinical visits, and to provide a comprehensive narrative of primary care physician and patient experiences with telemedicine during the COVID-19 pandemic.en_US
dc.titleThe Physician and Patient Experiences of Primary Care Telemedicine During the COVID-19 Pandemicen_US

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