In a first, a city doctor has now come up with ‘tips’ to communicate in an effective and simple way using a smartphone. These days, everybody wants to use Whatsapp and this city doctor is giving us goals for effective use of Whatsapp.
“Everybody uses a smartphone these days. Patients message the doctors or sometimes call us asking for medicines or dosages, the problem however, are that this can lead to misinformation. Sometimes, doctors may not completely be able to recollect the patient’s history or so,” said Dr Saurabh Dani, practising gynaecologist and obstetrics at Cloudnine Hospital.
Understanding this confusion, Dr Dani has released a leaflet, or guide to help solve this problem, “It is important to effectively use this gadget for betterment of patients as well as doctors.” Dr Dani has now started spreading it across patients so as to make them aware about the effective usage. Furthermore, it will help in building better patient- doctor relationship by improved communication.
It is, however the best option to visit a doctor face to face, say doctors. “It is very important to understand that as a doctor, it is very difficult to remember every patient and his/her history,” said Dr Laxman Khyade, cardiac surgeon at Bombay Hospital.
He added, “Hence, whenever I take their call I ask them to Whatsapp their previous reports so that I can give correct diagnosis. If in case, I feel it necessary, I ask them to meet me personally.”
It is important, therefore to understand about the doctor’s availability and the patient’s emergency at the same time too. “Nobody calls up a doctor just like that. Only during an emergency, will they call,” said Dr Rohan Jahagirdar, consultant psychiatrist from Pune.
“I allocate an hour for my patients to call me each day. Typically, as a psychiatrist it’s important for me understand the emotional emergency of the patient. Secondly, I tell my patients that I use whatsapp only twice in the day and hence, reverting back to each one with complete remembrance of each person’s history is pretty impossible. So, sending prescription would be very advisable,” he added.
However, nothing can replace a face-to-face diagnosis, say experts. “It is important for every patient to understand that WhatsApp is an important communication tool, but cannot be a substitute to clinical examination,” said Dr Abijeet Kale, orthopaedic surgeon and assistant professor at LTMG Sion Hospital.