In Focus: Hot Topics

DocClocker App Now Features Remote Check-In to Prevent Spread of COVID-19

DocClocker, an app that allows patients to receive real-time wait time reporting of their medical providers, enabling patients to avoid long waits in medical waiting rooms and limit COVID-19 exposure risks, now offers DocClocker Remote Check-In.

As practices reopen amid the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare providers are being forced to rethink the traditional waiting room experience. This new DocClocker feature allows patients to now remotely check-in to their doctor appointments from their car, in addition to receiving real-time wait time reporting; preventing the spread of the highly contagious virus by limiting the exposure of sick patients in waiting rooms.

In addition to remote check-ins and receiving real-time wait times, patients can easily locate and select in-network medical providers—selecting by reviewing the provider’s specific information and a display of average wait times. Patients can manage appointments through the app, receive appointment reminders, write reviews, and report long waits. DocClocker is free to all patients and is availabe through the Apple App store and Google Play.

Toxin Trade Dispute

Evolus’ and Daewoong Pharma’s Jeuveau lost the first round in a trade dispute with AbbVie’s Allergan and its Korean partner Medytox that sought to block imports of the Botox rival, but the match is not over yet.

AbbVie’s Allergan and its Korean partner Medytox allege that a former Medytox researcher stole Botox samples and transferred them to Daewoong in January 2019. Now, the Administrative Law Judge overseeing the United States International Trade Commission (USITC) released a Notice of Initial Determination for the case and has recommended a 10-year ban on Jeuveau imports, the companies said in statements.

This non-binding initial decision sites a violation of Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, according to media reports. It will not affect the Jeuveau launch and product supply unless and until it is finalized. The United States International Trade Commission will review the case, with a final determination targeted for November 2020. Evolus’ stock prices fell as analysts cut their share-price targets after the initial ruling.

Evolus intends to petition the Commission to review the case on the grounds of an improper attempt to use the USITC to litigate a dispute between two Korean competitors. The trade secrets asserted by Allergan and Medytox have never been used in the US, Evolus stresses. The intellectual property jurisdiction of the USITC was created to protect domestic industries from improper foreign competition.

“We strongly disagree with the initial determination and we look forward to the full Commission’s Final Determination targeted for November 6, 2020. In addition, we intend to petition the Commission to review the initial determination,” says David Moatazedi, Evolus President and Chief Executive Officer, in a news release.

New Survey on Reopening after COVID-19:
If You Wear Masks, They Will Come Back

Eighty-five percent of people plan to return to aesthetic treatments within 12 months of COVID-19 restrictions being lifted, and 63 percent plan to return to practices within just three months of restrictions being lifted in their respective countries, according to a new survey by Cynosure.

The survey, conducted among 3,000 consumers across the US, the UK, Spain, South Korea, and Australia, also found that the use of facial masks and gloves by practice staff are the primary measure patients indicate they’d like to see in place at their aesthetic offices. Thirty-six percent of those surveyed noted they would feel more reassured if waiting room patients were also required to wear masks.

The new survey also found that:

  • 34 percent of patients would like to receive proactive communications and reassurances around in-office disinfection and safety procedures from their practices.
  • 35 percent of respondents would like practices to limit the number of patients in the office at any one time.
  • 76 percent of practitioners surveyed anticipate patients returning to treatments within 12 months of restrictions being lifted.
  • 62 percent are also confident their business revenue will return to pre-pandemic levels as well.

Online Consults On the Rise; Credentials Matter

The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) is reporting a “massive upswing” in demand for virtual consultations during lockdown, but urges the public to remain cautious.

Despite predicted financial strains being felt across the country, cosmetic surgery patients have still been researching procedures during their time at home. In fact, there has been a universal surge in surgeons offering virtual consultations, with some BAAPS members seeing a 60-70 percent rise.

“There are clear advantages to doing a video consultation, including the fact that you do not need to take a day off work to see your doctor and do not need to find the clinic and make your way there,” says Rajan Uppal, consultant plastic surgeon and BAAPS member, in a news release. “This is especially true if you go to a new town and are traveling some distance. The video consultation means there is no travel involved at all which can be expensive for some patients traveling long distance. A video consultation can also be organized much more easily than a face-to-face consultation with most clinics and surgeons. Some patients are more likely to book a video consultation rather than actually go and see a surgeon face-to-face in the first instance.”

Safety is always a top priority and BAAPS urges patients to ensure that that they find a surgeon who is registered and has all the appropriate qualifications. Surgeons who are members of professional organizations, such as BAAPS, will also be audited annually and held accountable when it comes to maintaining their knowledge and training.

They also urge caution when it comes to making decisions based solely on online reviews. While online reviews and photographs can be an essential part of choosing a surgeon, they do not necessarily represent all leaders in the field.

Another important factor when having a cosmetic surgery consultation online is privacy, especially when you may be showing intimate parts of your body to the surgeon.

Dan Marsh, consultant plastic surgeon and BAAPS Honorary Secretary says, “The issues that need to be discussed about virtual consultations include confidentiality, whether they are recorded and if there is a chaperone present for undressing to show intimate parts of the body. Please check the privacy and confidentiality statements on the website of the clinic or surgeon that you are seeing. The video consultation should be followed by a clinical examination face-to-face before planning any surgery. There also needs to be a 14-day cooling off period which can tie up with the 14 days self-isolation required currently.”

BAAPS Vice President & consultant plastic and hand surgeon Mary O’Brien adds, “Undressing on video to expose intimate parts of the body does not allow a proper clinical examination and perhaps should be avoided.

“Patients need to understand before booking their video consultation, many of which will be charged for, that not every provider can offer a date for surgery at the moment and, even if they can, it may be subject to change.

“Also, if patients are booking Zoom consultations with surgeons based a significant distance away from where they live, there needs to be consideration of where the actual surgery will take place and how they can access post-operative care in the event of a complication if they have been treated a long-distance away.”

BAAPS says that the prevalence of coronavirus has made patients cautious in going to see a surgeon in a hospital. Although there is some uncertainty as to the safety of having surgery, reputable clinics and surgeons will have established protocols in place developed along national standards that will protect patients and staff. In many cases this will involve a period of isolation before surgery and taking nasal swabs two days before an operation, although protocols differ in different regions of the country. Surgeons may also be tested themselves to make sure they are not infected with the virus.

New InfoGraphic EDucates on Rashes V. COVID Toes

Skin signs of COVID-19 infection are a gowing concern. A new infographic from First Derm compares and contrasts rashes associated with COVID-19.