Is telehealth suitable for me?

Telehealth connects regional patients to safe, high quality and cost-effective clinical services closer to home. A telehealth appointment saves travelling long distances by having an appointment at the local health centre – or in some cases, at home if you have good internet coverage and a suitable computer, tablet or smartphone. You can also access free technical support over the phone to set up your computer or tablet for a telehealth consult at home.

What services are available to me via telehealth?

Some of the health specialities that offer consults via telehealth include:

✓ aged care and rehabilitation

✓ allied health services

✓ burns

✓ cancer services

✓ cardiology

✓ chronic conditions, including diabetes, asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

✓ Emergency Telehealth Service (ETS)

✓ Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT)

✓ audiology

✓ gastroenterology

✓ general medicine

✓ general surgery

✓ geriatrics

✓ haematology

✓ Hospital in the Home (HITH)

✓ mental health

✓ neurological services

✓ orthopaedics

✓ paediatric services

✓ pain management

✓ palliative care

✓ plastic surgery

✓ preparation for childbirth and parenting

✓ renal and urology services

✓ respiratory and sleep medicine

✓ rheumatology

✓ stroke

✓ women’s health services

 

How can I request a telehealth appointment?

If you would like to know if your next appointment can be closer to home using telehealth, ask the health professional or specialist who has booked your appointment. If you are able to have your appointment via telehealth, they will contact you to arrange a suitable day and time.

Please note not all appointments are suitable to be held by telehealth, you may need to attend some appointments in person.

If you would like to know the nearest health centre to you that has telehealth facilities available, please contact your Regional Telehealth Support Officer.

What can I expect from my appointment?

A telehealth appointment is just like any other medical appointment, the only difference is you will be seeing your specialist on a screen.

If you attend a health centre you do not have to operate the videoconferencing equipment yourself and most people say it feels no different from a general face to face appointment.  

Any photographs, X-Rays or test results required for your appointment can be organised and given to the medical specialist, allied health professional or nurse before or during the appointment.

All medical records are treated according to the privacy legislation and WA Health standards.

How long will it take?

This depends on what you need to talk about. It might be longer if it’s your first appointment. As with all medical appointments, there are times when appointments maybe delayed and you have to wait. If the appointment is taking place at a WA Country Health centre, the Regional Telehealth Support Officer or support staff will keep you informed of delays.  

How private is the appointment?

Telehealth appointments are as private as in-person appointments. Both you and your health professional will each be in a private room. Measures are in place to ensure the videoconferencing is secure.

What does it cost?

Using telehealth is free for public patients. Not having to travel for an appointment can save you time and money, and reduce time away from family and work.

If you are attending a telehealth appointment with a private provider, appointment fees and charges may apply and this should be discussed with your specialist prior to your appointment.

Can I bring a support person?

Yes, family members, friends and support people can attend the appointment with you. This can include taking someone to the health centre or having them with you at home during your appointment.

For outpatient specialist consults a local health professional such as a GP or a physiotherapist may also be in the room with you and may also speak with the specialist via videoconference during the consultation.

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