The Role of Virtual Care in Public Health

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National Public Health Week and COVID-19

The first full week of April is observed as National Public Health Week by the APHA.  It is a time to recognize the contributions of public health and highlight issues that are important to improving the nation’s health.  Given the coronavirus pandemic, public health is at the forefront of everyone’s minds every day, across the nation and the world.

The Importance of Mental Health

One of the core themes for National Public Health Week 2020 is mental health.  According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), nearly one in five Americans live with a mental illness.  This situation is compounded during the current pandemic.  As Joshua A. Gordon, M.D., Ph.D., Director of NIMH, recently shared, “We are all feeling uncertain about what could happen in the coming weeks, as we hope to slow the spread of this pandemic.  Feelings of anxiety and uncertainty are completely normal during times like this… Now imagine you are facing this uncertainty and have a mental illness.  How much more challenging must it be to navigate this uncertainty?  While we all are concerned about the future, for those with anxiety disorders, worry may be all-consuming.”

The CDC provides information on dealing with fear, anxiety, and stress brought on by the coronavirus pandemic while reinforcing that people with preexisting mental health conditions should continue with their treatment and be aware of new or worsening symptoms.

How Synzi Enables the Delivery of Mental Health Support

Synzi’s virtual care platform and telehealth apps helps ensure that mental and behavioral health patients continue to receive the care they need:

  • Staff can use Synzi’s app to conduct ongoing appointments via video – and also conduct more frequent video check-in’s – with patients in order to continue the delivery of critical and compassionate care.
  • With Synzi’s bidirectional communication, a patient (or one’s family caregiver) can access the provider on-demand, receive needed care, minimize ER visits, and lower the risk of rehospitalization – especially at a time when hospitals are already impacted by a surge in patients with the coronavirus.
  • Synzi’s platform also has messaging functionality which administrators can use to send patients a cadence of scheduled communications via email or text. Messaging can be customized to the patient’s condition, medication regimen, recommended coping strategies, etc.

Removing the physical barrier between patients and behavioral health providers helps patients continue to receive the care and expertise they need when they need it most.

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