Virtual Ophthalmology: Telemedicine in a COVID-19 Era

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167 Scopus citations


Purpose: To discuss the effects of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 betacoronavirus on ambulatory ophthalmology practices, the value proposition of telemedicine, teleophthalmology implementation methodologies, and the accelerated future of telemedicine. Design: Review of the current telehealth landscape including usage, policies, and techniques for ambulatory practice integration. Methods: We provide author-initiated review of recent trends in telehealth, governmental recommendations for health care delivery during the COVID-19 pandemic, and a PubMed Central query for telemedicine in ophthalmology or teleophthalmology. In addition, the authors' comprehensive experience in telemedicine design and implementation is provided. Results: We provide a summary describing the present state of telehealth, teleophthalmology modeling, care delivery, and the proposed impact of telehealth surges on the future of ophthalmology practice. Conclusion: Recent patient and provider interest in telemedicine, the relaxation of regulatory restrictions, increased remote care reimbursement, and ongoing social distancing practices compel many ophthalmologists to consider virtualizing services.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-242
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Ophthalmology
StatePublished - Aug 2020
Externally publishedYes


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