As a result of the covid 19 pandemic, People across the world stay connected using teleconferencing platforms like Zoom. But when it comes to telemedicine, not all medical care is easily translated to a remote format.
In remote medical practices, voice therapy presents a particular challenge because clinicians must depend on acoustic recordings of voice to assess the efficacy of their procedures. But most teleconferencing platforms distort sounds in their efforts to remove background noise.
Boston University graduate researcher Hasini Weerathunge associated with other BU researchers to put five different HIPAA-compliant teleconferencing platforms to the test: Cisco Webex, Microsoft Teams, Doxy me, VSee Messenger, and Zoom. Their goal is to discover if prominent teleconferencing platforms used for telemedicine could accurately capture voices enough for clinicians to successfully treat patients with voice and speech disorders.
As the pandemic unfolded and lockdowns moved much voice and speech therapy online, “there was no consensus among voice and speech clinicians who were trying to convert to tele practice therapy, and we wanted to determine the accuracy of the acoustic measures they can get through tele practice,” Weerathunge says.