How telemedicine can help expectant mothers?

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How telemedicine can help expectant mothers?

Pregnancy should always be seen as a peaceful time of preparation for welcoming a new member into one’s family. Unfortunately, expectant mothers often experience the feeling of insecurity and stress. Nowadays, preterm and high-risk pregnancies make 6-12% of total number of pregnancies (In 2014 almost 4 million children were born in the USA and 5,2 million in the EU). However, according to the Internet Journal of Genecology and Obstetrics, 90% of them could be avoided with expert care and monitoring. Therefore, telemedicine may bring positive changes into pregnant women’ care.

Here are four ways in which remote pregnancy monitoring can help expectant mothers :

  1. Telemedicine helps provide better control and gather more data for making more-informed decisions and better diagnosis

An expectant mother can gain better control over the course of her pregnancy as the remote monitoring enables her to gather more data and share it with her doctor or a midwife. Also, if she gives the permission, the obtained data can also be shared with other specialists for futher consultation. What’s more, a mother-to-be has the possibility to ask her gynaecologist for advice anytime and from just about anywhere. An important aspect is also the fact that more data allows for making more-informed decisions and better diagnosis which makes is easier for healthcare providers to detect any possible threats in advance.

  1. Telemedicine helps manage high-risk pregnancies

Telemedicine allows expectant mothers in high-risk pregnancies to stay at home rather than at hospital. Thanks to remote monitoring, healthcare providers can take care of pregnant women and remotely check if they are keeping well from any place at anytime. As a result, the unnecessary and often dangerous for high-risk pregnancies ‘travels’ from one doctor’s office to another could be avoided.

  1. Telemedicine connects expectant mothers with their doctors and midwives

Telemedicne enables expectant mothers to keep all pregnancy-related information up-to-date and share them with the medical personnel. Basic data, for instance, the number of contractions and the baby’s movements, any skin changes that occur in pregnancy, gastrointestinal problems and more can be monitored. Once the data has been gathered, it can be shared with a doctor or a midwife who can then analyse the results and makes  decisions about the further course of pregnancy. As telemedicine can provide the health care providers with the complete set of analysed data in, for instance, one dedicated panel, they can devote their full attention to the expecting mothers during and in between visits. Last but not least, continuous data gathering enables medical personnel to make better diagnosis earlier and provide better care, assistance, and support.

  1. Telemedicine helps increase the understanding and awareness of the pregnancy symptoms

Expectant mothers can learn about the symptoms they’re experiencing during pregnancy. Therefore, they understand their pregnancy better and worry less. Also, many mobile applications can be utilised to gain access to pregnancy tips and health related information.

Many studies confirm that prenatal monitoring technology is effective:

  • According to UNICEF, 80 percent of maternal deaths worldwide could be prevented if women had access to essential obstetric and basic health care services, including prenatal monitoring technology. There is a pressing need for a low cost solution that will enable hospital grade medical care in rural and remote settings. Access to preventive monitoring technology will lower costs by mitigating adverse outcomes associated with high risk pregnancies.
  • According to BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth all of their respondents participating in self-assessment of fetal movements said they felt calm, relaxed, mentally present and focused during the observations. Furthermore, the women described the observation of the movements as safe and reassuring and a moment for communication with their unborn baby.
  • According to e- MomCare study their remote monitoring model is able to detect 82% of the preeclamptic pregnant patients as suspicious.

The following infographics shows more details according to impact of digital health on patients and doctors.

http://hitconsultant.net/2015/01/08/impact-of-digital-health-on-patients-providers-infographic/

Telemedicine can improve the quality of pregnant womens’ lives. At an early stage a large part of the normal  pregnancies would not require intensive checkups thus reducing the workload for the physicians and the number of visits to the out-patients clinic by patients. Thanks to the possibility to record the basic medical results and a sense of psychic comfort (based on self-assessment) expectant mothers can feel safer and in control of the course of their pregnancy.

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