Dr. Michael Greiwe is an orthopedic surgeon with more than ten years of experience. As a board-certified orthopedic surgeon, He specializes in shoulder replacement, rotator cuff pathology, instability, and labral tears. Dr. Greiwe created a telemedicine platform dedicated to orthopedic providers to optimize care and increase practice revenue. He is determined to facilitate cutting-edge healthcare delivery for clinics in a way that offers patients incredibly convenient treatment options.
Furthermore, Dr. Greiwe also specializes in advanced arthroscopic surgical techniques for sports-related injuries of the shoulder, knee, and elbow.
Telemedicine amid Pandemic: An alternative medium for healthcare providers
“When the pandemic hit the U.S, physicians needed an alternative way to provide care. Since we had the structure pre-COVID, we grew ten times in two months. It was really tough; obviously, there were so many bad things happening at the time, but our practice grew in a way that helped establish telemedicine as something that was very helpful for patients and providers,” said Dr. Michael Greiwe in an interview with Top Doctor Magazine. It is essential to understand that Dr. Greiwe and his staff have provided care for over 50,000 patients.
Insights on Orthopaedics and Telemedicine
There are a lot of ways you can use telemedicine inside orthopedics, with a focus on three basic ways. Dr. Greiwe stated that the first one is a post-operative recheck appointment, where patients answer questions. The second stage is the imaging follow-up, designed to review a patient’s X-ray and MRI scan through screen sharing while the physicians explain everything in detail. The last stage is the injection follow-up, designed to see how a patient is doing after receiving injections.
COVID-19 effects on Orthopaedics
“It has been tough. We have had to adjust significantly. We were unable to perform surgeries for six weeks in April; we were only doing urgent surgeries. That slowed us down. It allowed us to reset and make sure that we are doing the small things right. We transitioned to telemedicine, and it was what helped keep our lights on, to be honest, because, during that time, we couldn’t see so many patients.,” said Dr. Greiwe. He stated that orthopedic surgeons made some adjustments to survive through the challenges. Dr. Greiwe was grateful for the PPE money that was distributed because it helped tremendously.
Orthopedic Practice and the New Normal
Dr. Greiwe disclosed that the COVID-19 pandemic is forcing a couple of changes, eventually becoming the new normal. Physicians will perform many outpatient surgeries because patients don’t want to spend a night in the hospital due to COVID-19.
“Also, we will see more computer-guided and robotic surgery and patient-specific guides and 3D printing, which will allow us to create implants and things that are specific to patients’ anatomy. New approaches are happening particularly in the shoulder where we are developing rotator cuff sparing approach for total shoulder replacement,” continued Dr. Greiwe.
COVID-19: Potential change in PPE usage and Social Distancing
Dr. Greiwe predicts that governments will enforce PPE use in 2021 and beyond. He also added that social distancing would continue as well. For Dr. Greiwe, it’s likely that people will still maintain social distancing and the use of PPE for the next 24 to 36 months.
Telemedicine and the Future of Healthcare Services
“I think we are going to continue to see telemedicine as a primary way of seeing patients. One of the things that have been holding telemedicine back in the past was rules around licensure for particular states, and that was taken away by pandemic,” said Dr. Greiwe. Ultimately, the new administration needs to support telemedicine to provide healthcare access across the country and provide reimbursement for telemedicine, which will be useful for patients and physicians.