In this day-and-age, it can be borderline irritating to have to sit down, call your doctor’s office and schedule an appointment to be seen. Even with great insurance, it can be difficult to see your doctor right away. Not to mention getting prescriptions can be even more tedious, going through the doctor only to get a slip that tells you to pick up your medications in a different location at a different time. There’s no denying the fact that these kinds of trips to the doctors can be inconvenient, but there is a new innovation in the medical field that could put these kinds of worries to rest: AdviNow & Akos Clinics which are known as TeleMedicine.
What is TeleMedicine?
The newest wave of innovation in the medical field is TeleMedicine. This is the distribution of healthcare services and health-related information through the internet and technology. This kind of technology allows “long-distance patient and clinician contact, care, advice, reminders, education, intervention, monitoring, and remote admissions.” This means patients are able to receive the proper health-related services and information without going into a doctor’s office. This allows patients to get prescriptions/treatments at a much faster rate than normal, all from just a few clicks of a button. This sort of service can be done via smartphone, tablet, or computer.
What is AdviNow?
One company that is seeking to revolutionize the way we receive our medical treatments is AdviNow. They are the creators of Akos Clinics which are people’s one-stop-shop for people looking for healthcare services. But what do these clinics look like? Let us explain. Akos Clinics are automated healthcare clinics where a patient simply walks into the kiosk, uses a tablet or smartphone to input their insurance information and answer questions related to their visit, then enter the office to get checked out. However, any sort of blood work, blood pressure, heart monitoring, hearing tests, etc. are all done by the patient. The artificial intelligence and computers guide a patient through the tests they need to perform based on the information they provided beforehand. The great thing about this system is that patients don’t need to drive to a facility that is 30-45 mins away, they drive to whichever one is closest to them. This sort of automated process eliminates most manual data collection and documentation activity, creating a much smoother process for doctors and patients. The normal amount of time spent at these Clinics for patients is about 10-15 minutes, making it possible for these virtual doctors to see almost 100 patients a day. One clinic opened up here at a Safeway in Metro Phoenix and the great thing is that any medications that need to be provided to patients who are visiting are immediately sent over to the pharmacy in-store and filled within a few minutes. No longer will patients need to travel across town to their preferred pharmacy a day later to get their prescriptions.
So what does something like this mean for people trying to recover from addiction?
Addiction and Withdrawal
We live in an age of convenience and accessibility. Everything is streamlined in order to avoid extra steps, unnecessary headaches, or any complications in a process. Thankfully, we are starting to see this in the medical field. TeleMedicine is making it easier for patients to be seen, diagnosed, and treated properly. But, how does this relate to people recovering from addiction? Well, people who are actively trying to recover from addiction are often prescribed medications to ease any sort of withdrawal symptoms they may encounter. Withdrawal can be an extremely uncomfortable thing to deal with for people going through early recovery. When a person has developed such a strong tolerance on a substance, their body becomes dependent on it. If a person decides to cut out a particular substance, cold-turkey, they will absolutely meet some resistance.
Their brains have been rewired into thinking they are dependent on using their substance of choice in order to function properly. Substances also manipulate the brain’s reward system, causing it to be less stimulated when performing actions that would normally be rewarding (eating, exercising, socializing, having sex, etc.). The amount of dopamine released while using substances is far greater than normal, making the substance far more desirable. Over time, if the user continues to abuse substances, they will develop a tolerance, making it harder for them to be affected by rewarding activities, even substance abuse. This is how dependence is formed. Once dependence is formed, it can be difficult for an addict to cut themselves off. If a former addict does decide to stop using a substance, they will experience withdrawal symptoms such as:
- Profuse Sweating
- Muscle Aches
- Seizures (in more severe cases)
These kinds of symptoms can be nearly impossible to fight with sheer willpower alone. This is why we often see people relapsing into their old habits. However, there are medications that can suppress or even eliminate these symptoms, making it possible for these people to recover.
TeleMedicine vs Addiction
TeleMedicine is something that every former addict could use, especially when it comes to prescriptions that help ease withdrawal symptoms. TeleMedicine allows for quick, convenient healthcare visits and allows patients to receive medications just minutes after their visit. For people suffering from withdrawal, they do not have a lot of time to sit around a wait for a doctor to see them. Cravings are all too real for these individuals and they can be nearly uncontrollable. Since people going through recovery can use whichever Akos Clinic is closest to them, they can get the needed medications to suppress withdrawal symptoms as quickly as possible. This could have a significant impact on relapse rates.
We are thankful to see companies like AdviNow creating health clinics meant to create a more streamlined process for patients. We are excited to see how this will impact the healthcare world and what kind of impact it will have on people who are actively struggling with addiction or are in early recovery.
Content for Scottsdale Recovery Center and Arizona Addiction Recovery Centers created by Cohn Media, LLC. Passionate and creative writing and broadcasting, covering the following industries: addiction rehab, health care, entertainment, technology and advocate of clear communication, positivity and humanity at its best. www.cohn.media
Talk to Someone Who’s Been There. Talk to Someone Who Can Help. Scottsdale Recovery Center holds the highest accreditation (Joint Commission) and is Arizona’s premier rehab facility since 2007. Call 866.893.6816.