Réseau québécois de la télésanté

All about teleconsultation

April 5, 2024
By Réseau québécois de la télésanté  


More and more healthcare professionals are offering their patients the opportunity to meet virtually. This type of consultation, carried out at home using a computer or mobile device, is called a teleconsultation. The Réseau québécois de la télésanté Web Portal (telesantequebec.ca) has just launched a new page for patients wishing to obtain information and prepare for such a meeting.
A mother and baby in front of a computer screen showing a doctor.
Teleconsultation is easy to carry out and fits in well with everyday life.

A healthcare professional is offering you a teleconsultation and you’d like to find out more about this activity? You now have access to comprehensive information to help you prepare for this encounter! The page Participate in a teleconsultation as a patient guides you, step by step, to make this experience as profitable as possible.

Teleconsultation is also known as a virtual meeting or virtual consultation. This telehealth activity enables a real-time, remote exchange between a patient and a healthcare professional. Teleconsultation differs from other modes of communication such as telephone or face-to-face meetings in several ways:

  • takes place at home;
  • allows people to hear and see each other;
  • is carried out using a computer, tablet or smartphone;
  • uses a secure video calling application (free).

Who is it for?

Teleconsultation is a booming business, but it’s not suitable for all specialties and types of healthcare follow-up. For example, it is obviously not suitable when a physical examination is required. It can, however, be particularly useful when travel is a problem for the patient, or when the patient has infectious symptoms or is at particular risk of contracting an infection.

The decision to offer teleconsultation therefore rests with the professional. He or she must ensure that the technological conditions are right, and that it meets the needs of his or her clientele. When this option is available, the professional can discuss it with the patient. The patient then has the opportunity to accept or opt for a face-to-face or telephone consultation (if available).

The benefits of teleconsultation

The fact that appointments take place from home rather than in a healthcare facility saves time, energy and money.

What’s more, teleconsultation…

  • is free;
  • improves access to services;
  • facilitates the participation of a loved one;
  • is secure;
  • is easy to use.

A step-by-step guide

The page Participate in a teleconsultation as a patient is your starting point for familiarizing yourself with teleconsultation. Its interactive nature allows you to target the steps that interest you in preparation for your virtual meeting. A downloadable and printable version is also available on the page.

Page visual Participate in a teleconsultation as a patient
The first steps of the support guide.

Promoting access to healthcare services

An increasing number of initiatives using information and communications technologies are being implemented in Quebec. These technologies, known as “telehealth”, are used to complement conventional services. Care teams use telehealth to promote access to services and ensure a fair level of care for all.

Teleconsultation is one of the means used to facilitate access to services. If you are interested in this type of consultation as part of your health follow-up, discuss it with your healthcare professional. He or she will be able to see if he or she can offer it to you.

Watch this short information video produced in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, but still relevant today: It’s time for telehealth!Open an external link