What hardware and apps should I use for telehealth visits for those with hearing impairments?
If you see enough patients, you are bound to run into patients who may be hard of hearing or deaf. Persons with disabilities deserve great care. Effective communication is essential to ensure a high quality of care.
Consider using the following computer equipment, hardware setup, and apps, for your telehealth and telepsychiatry visits:
- Make sure that there is as little background noise as possible on both sides of the camera. This can be challenging in certain facilities that are inherently noisy, such as jails or inpatient units. Its helpful to have a dedicated office for telepsychiatry that can be insulated against background noise.
- Use a high-quality microphone speaker on both sides of the telehealth session. These are easy to use and inexpensive devices. You just plug and play, with a USB port.
- If the quality is still not good, you can connect the audio through the telephone while keeping video with the telemedicine platform.
- Provide the patient with headphones (noise cancelling preferred). This allows the patient to increase the volume and minimize the diffraction of noise.
- There are several closed-captioning apps on the market. Also, some videoconferencing platforms include closed captioning as an option. Just be sure that these technologies are all HIPAA compliant.
Check out our full post on "Telepsychiatry for the Hearing Impaired – Top 10 Tips."