McGlone: telemedicine could provide important support for health service

SDLP MLA for Mid Ulster, Patsy McGlone has received a reply to a Priority Written Assembly question he asked to Health Minister, Robin Swann, providing an update on telemedicine capacity.

The Mid Ulster MLA said, “These are unprecedented times and our health service is working tirelessly to keep us safe and fight back against COVID-19. They deserve our appreciation and most sincere thanks for all that they are doing, in the most challenging of circumstances.

“The Minister for Health responded to my Assembly question advising that he giving active consideration to how telemedicine capacity can be increased. This is very welcome. I was pleased to hear that the review determined telemedicine could be used for review appointments, assessment and diagnostic processes.

“It was also welcome that the work determined telemedicine could be safely used to deliver remote therapies. While not a replacement for face to face clinical care, this will provide some support to people who are struggling with their mental health as a result of lockdown.

“I urge the Minister to continue exploring how to improve telemedicine capacity and how this would be utilised to the benefit of patients. This would be an important step to maximise spare capacity in certain medical disciplines and provide care to people who need it.”