Objective: To evaluate the feasibility of remote rounding using commercially available standard tablets with videoconferencing system and assess patient satisfaction.
Methods: Thirty-two patients with at least 2 postoperative days of hospital stay after robotic urologic procedures were included in the study. On the first postoperative day, the physician-patient encounter was performed as telerounding with videoconferencing due to the physician's duties scheduled in another affiliated hospital. On the second day, the personal bedside encounter took place. The tablet we used was an iPad2 (Apple, iOS 5.1; Apple, Cupertino, CA) with a videoconferencing application. A telerounding satisfaction survey was fulfilled by all patients on the touchscreen of the tablet.
Results: Average time of telerounding encounter was 4.5 minutes (range, 1.0-13.5 minutes), average age of the patient was 57.7 years (range, 19-80 years), and 19 were men (59%). Patients expressed a high level of satisfaction with 91% of patients stating that their care was better using telerounding and 97% of patients stating that telerounding should be a regular part of patient care in the hospital. Additionally, 94% of patients stated that they could easily communicate with their doctor over the telerounding system, 84% of patients agreed that they would feel comfortable with telerounding daily if they were hospitalized again and 81% of patients would prefer telerounding communication with their doctor than be directly seen by another doctor.
Conclusion: Tablet telerounding using videoconferencing can be a strong supplementing tool in doctor-patient communication. It is convenient for the physician and increases the patient's hospital stay satisfaction.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.