This information explains what a televisit is so you can decide if it’s right for you.Back to top
What is a televisit?
A televisit is when your healthcare provider uses technology to care for you without you having to travel to their office. During your televisit, you and your healthcare provider will see and talk with each other using a computer or smart device (smartphone or tablet). Your healthcare provider will be able to check how you’re doing, diagnose any problems you have, and come up with a treatment plan for you all by video (see Figure 1). Your video won’t be recorded or saved.Back to top
What are the benefits of televisits?
There are many benefits to having a televisit, including:
- Getting you the care you need without having to travel to the hospital.
- Saving you travel time and money.
- Helping you spend less time at your healthcare provider’s office.
- Letting you have tests done at a local clinic instead of having to commute to the hospital. This depends on where you live.
- Not having to take time off from your responsibilities to travel to the hospital.
- Not having to have a caregiver travel with you to the hospital.
One of the main goals of televisits is to bring care closer to where you live. Many people say televisits are like being right in their doctor’s office. We have offered televisits at Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) for several years in many services, such as Psychiatry, Genetics, Supportive Care, and in the Bone Marrow Transplant service. Almost all people are happy with the program and find the quality of care through televisits to be very high.Back to top
Will my information stay private?
Yes. Televisits meet the strict standards of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). This means your privacy is protected just like all your visits with your healthcare providers. MSK works with Cisco Systems, the world’s leader in information technology, to make sure your televisit is private and secure.Back to top
How will my televisit work?
If you decide to have a televisit, we will schedule your appointment for you. You can either have your televisit from an MSK regional site (such as Monmouth, Nassau, or Westchester) or from your personal computer or smart device at home or at work.
Televisits from an MSK regional site
If you have your televisit from an MSK Regional site, you will need to go to that site on the day of your appointment. After you check in, a member of our staff will take you to an exam room. The exam room will have a video system in it. We will close the door to give you privacy, and a nurse will be in the room with you. Your nurse will check your vital signs and explain how the system works. At the time of your appointment, your nurse will call your healthcare provider’s office using the touch screen. You may see the Office Coordinator from your doctor’s office on the screen while they transfer your call. Once you’re connected, you will see your healthcare provider on a large video monitor and you’ll see and hear each other just like you would if you were in the same office together. When talking with your healthcare provider, look at the screen to keep eye contact, just like in person. If you’re having trouble seeing or hearing your healthcare provider, tell the Care Coordinator or nurse who brought you to the room.
At the end of your visit, your healthcare provider will give you follow-up instructions, such as appointments or blood work. If there are any technical problems, they will continue your visit over the phone, if needed. We don’t expect any technical problems.
If you don’t feel well, or if you’re uncomfortable at any time during your visit, tell your healthcare provider. If you need help, press the red call button on the back wall of the room.
Televisits using your personal computer or smart device at home or work
If you have your televisit from home or work on your personal computer or smart device, we will send a message to your MyMSK account (MSK’s patient portal). In your calendar, you will find an appointment link to start your televisit. If you’re using a smart device, make sure you have the MyMSK Patient Portal app installed on your device before your visit. For more information, read Getting Ready for Your Televisit: Using Your Smart Device.
If you’re using your personal computer, make sure you have Cisco Jabber Guest software on your computer before your visit. For more information, read Getting Ready for Your Televisit: Using Cisco Jabber Guest on Your Personal Computer (PC) or Getting Ready for Your Televisit: Using Cisco Jabber Guest on Your Apple Computer.
You should know your username and password for MyMSK so that you can log on before your visit. If your caregiver manages your MyMSK account for you, make sure they’re with you during your televisit so they can help you. For more information about how you can get the most out of your televisit, read the resource Tips for Your Televisit.
If you don’t feel well, or if you’re uncomfortable at any time during your visit, tell your healthcare provider. If you need help, press the red call button on the back wall of the room.Back to top
Can my doctor diagnose me through a televisit?
Many exams can be done during a televisit. If needed, your healthcare provider may ask you to move a part of your body, so they can see how well you move or if you have pain.
Sometimes a televisit video isn’t a good way to examine you. This is rare. Your healthcare team knows the reason for your visit ahead of time, so we know if a televisit is a safe and effective way to see you.Back to top
Does my televisit go in my medical record?
Yes. Your healthcare provider will document the visit in your medical record in the same way they would if your visit were in person.Back to top
A few days after your televisit, we will send you a survey about your experience. Your feedback is important to us. We will use it to improve this service and keep it available to our patients.Back to top