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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 68  |  Issue : 7  |  Page : 1387-1391

Pivoting to teleconsultation for paediatric ophthalmology and strabismus: Our experience during COVID-19 times

Child Sight Institute, Jasti V Ramanamma's Children's Eye Care Center, L V Prasad Eye Institute, Kallam Anji Reddy Campus, Hyderabad, Telangana, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Ramesh Kekunnaya
L V Prasad Eye Institute, Banjara Hills, Road No. 2, Hyderabad, Telangana
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijo.IJO_1675_20

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Purpose: The objective is to analyse and report the data of teleconsultations provided to paediatric ophthalmology and strabismus patients during COVID-19 times and to elaborate our experience for guiding future teleconsultation practices to General, paediatric Ophthalmologists and Strabismologists. Methods: Retrospective analysis of electronic medical record data of teleconsultations provided in the department of Strabismus, Paediatric and Neuro-ophthalmology was done. Patients with optic nerve related disorders were excluded. Study period was one month. Statistical analysis of collected data was done using Microsoft excel. Results: A total of 198 patients were provided teleconsultations (an average of seven teleconsultations/day). The final analysis included 161 patients after excluding optic nerve related disorders. The median age was seven years. We had a near equal gender distribution (53% males and 47% females) of whom a third were new cases. Video calling was used in 14%, review of clinical photos shared was used in 53%. Rest of the 33% were given telephonic advice. Allergic conjunctivitis (14%), pseudophakia (9%), strabismus (12%), status post strabismus surgery (8%), cranial nerve palsies (11%) were common diagnoses. 19% (n = 30) were advised/needed visit in emergency services on same or next day. Conclusion: Our experience of teleconsultation during COVID-19 times for paediatric ophthalmology and strabismus patients was very encouraging. Pivoting teleconsultation platform can provide primary eye care to most of the patients and work as essential forward triage for rest. As we continue to further explore the currently available avenues in multimedia such as video conferencing and web/mobile based applications, we believe that tele-ophthalmology platform can provide a reliable service in patient care.

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