Steven Shook, MD: Transitioning to Telemedicine

May 19, 2020

The staff neurologist, Vice-Chair of Operations, and Quality Improvement Officer at Cleveland Clinic Neurological Institute discussed the institute’s transition to telemedicine and how it has been utilized.

“Historically, Cleveland Clinic as an enterprise has done less than 2% of its total care virtually. The Neurological Institute is probably closer to between 4% and 5%. We went from that to 75% or more of our care being provided virtually over the course of just a couple of weeks.”

In the last decade, the push from some in medicine toward using telemedicine and virtual care has been evident, with hopes of achieving a more robust model of care through supplemental virtual visits. This push for the use of telemedicine has been met with mostly positive reinforcement, though the progress of actually realizing its use has been rather lackluster across the board, as challenges with payment, insurance coverage, and reimbursement have presented roadblocks along the way.

Although, with the onset of the novel coronavirus pandemic, the process of incorporating telemedicine into care has sped up drastically. In just a matter of weeks, institutions and hospital systems across the United States have set up care models to aid patients almost exclusively in a virtual fashion. For those at Cleveland Clinic, like Steven Shook, MD, it had been used previously, though the need for a larger influx of meetings with patients has required some creative use of a number of platforms.

In this interview with NeurologyLive, the staff neurologist, Vice Chair of Operations, and Quality Improvement Officer at Cleveland Clinic Neurological Institute discusses the transition that has occurred at the institute, the various types of audio/visual platforms that they’ve utilized, as well as how this might impact the future use of telemedicine.