How COVID-19 Has Impacted Various Areas of Healthcare
The Coronavirus has changed life around the globe with lockdowns and an uneasy feeling when interacting with others. The economy has been ravaged with people of all walks of life losing their jobs. Healthcare has been no different as plenty of healthcare workers have lost their jobs in a myriad of areas. Nurses and doctors at hospitals had the most job security out of those in healthcare. Other healthcare businesses were deemed unessential by the government which many in healthcare feel like was a big overstep. Below are areas that COVID-19 has impacted in healthcare.
Hospitals had to make huge adaptations and so did the staff that are working at hospitals. Staff at times could not return home due to the fear they might infect their family with the virus. Contact with patients was limited and telemedicine was used more than ever before. Robots were introduced into the hospital to allow staff to check on patients and deliver medication. Doing this physically would require changing masks, gloves, and possibly scrubs. The robots made operations safer and more efficient overall. The amazing feature of these robots is the stethoscope attachment where a doctor can hear a heart beat and the sounds of a patient’s lungs.
The dental industry lost the largest percentage of jobs among healthcare workers. Office staff and hygienists were both let go simply due to the fact the practice could not pay them if they were not working. Emergency procedures were still allowed but a number of people had a tough time figuring out what was considered an emergency. Other patients are still not willing to go out into public and especially let someone work inside of their mouths. Dental practices are going to be instituting differing waiting room policies than in the past. Removing chairs is a first step and so is requiring masks until you see the dentist/hygienist has you in the chair.
Plastic surgeons had many of their elective procedures delayed due to be considered unessential. Whether you were looking for a Miami or Raleigh breast augmentation you had to wait. For surgeons, this gave them time to let their patients know how to prep for their procedure. Now that these practices are opening back up there is an option to get a Mommy Makeover to give you back that body you had before you had children. Pricing for certain procedures could drop due to the economic downturn but surgery is not something you want a bargain on.
Primary Care Physicians
A number of private practices opted to use telemedicine rather than risk an outbreak of the Coronavirus among their staff and patients. These virtual appointments were billed differently in the past but due to the pandemic they are bill the same as physical appointments. There were even options for drive-thru pediatricians whether a child needed a shot or to have an ear infection checked out.
The world of healthcare did an incredible job at adapting to some of the harshest restrictions ever imposed. Some of the changes will remain intact while others will return to normal after the pandemic has subsided.