7 ways physicians can lean into working from home

As several industries in the U.S. have taken advantage of the opportunity to work from home over the last four years, these options can be more limited for healthcare providers, who are often required to be face to face with their patients. 

While many physicians only consider telehealth appointments when it comes to working from home, there are several other ways physicians may be able to take advantage of the workforce trend, cutting out their daily commutes and balancing their work-life schedules more effectively, according to an April 15 report from Medscape.

Here are seven ways physicians can work from home while continuing to care for patients: 

1. Remote patient monitoring: Physicians can monitor patient health information from home, with opportunities across critical care, surgery, post-acute care, primary care and beyond.  

2. Online medication management: Gathering clinical data from patients does not require face-to-face meet ups. Physicians can provide prescriptions remotely for patients with stabilized chronic conditions or simple acute issues with easy virtual follow up appointments.

3. E-consults: E-consults facilitate collaboration among healthcare professionals about complex cases without direct patient interaction via online platforms using asynchronous communication methods. Physicians complete consultations from their homes or offices on a per-consult basis. 

4. Phone-only on-call positions: Physicians can be "on-call" to provide recommendations to patients over the phone after hours. Many practices employ call-only physician consultants. 

5. Supervision of nurse practitioners and physician assistants: In some states that require physician oversight of NPs and PAs, oversight can be done remotely. Physicians can be available for remote email consultations, chart reviews and regular provider meetings. 

6. Remote medical directorships: Many medical directorships do not require direct patient contact. Organizations including emergency medical service agencies, hospice services, med spas, blood and plasma donation centers, home health agencies, and substance use disorder treatment programs increasingly rely on remote medical directorships to meet legal requirements and accreditation standards.

7. Keeping a role in patient welfare: There are several at-home clinical opportunities, including medical monitoring for clinical trials. 


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