Telemedicine in Otolaryngology in the COVID-19 Era: A Year Out

Jason F Ohlstein, Omar G Ahmed, Jordan Garner, Masayoshi Takashima

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


One year ago, shortly after the onset of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, we published our initial experience with telemedicine. We showed that during the early pandemic, there was a dramatic shift to telemedicine and that 70% of our patients would decline telemedicine in favor of an in-person visit. As clinical limitations and stay-at-home orders relaxed, we sought to define how we have used telemedicine since. After the initial month of the pandemic, our utilization of telemedicine fell to an average of only 5% of visits over the past year. Nearly 80% of all telemedicine visits were routine follow-up visits, with its usage being unaffected by local policy and pandemic surges. The usefulness and applications of telemedicine have been well described; however, after our initial reliance on telemedicine, its use has been minimal. Moving forward, attention will need to focus on innovation and expanding comprehensive virtual examinations for otolaryngology to fully embrace this technology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e20794
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 29 2021


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