For Marie, a basic practitioner, and Richard, an emergency physician, teleconsultation permits them to flee the standing of conventional physician | EUROtoday

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A basic practitioner for ten years, Marie (first names have been modified), 36 years outdated, has by no means needed to open a cupboard. She gives replacements within the Lyon area, and devotes a couple of hours per week to teleconsultation.

As an worker of a platform, she earns between 300 and 700 euros per thirty days. “It’s a salary supplement”, she admits. And Marie decides her schedule: “I organize myself according to my availability: when I make a replacement and there are not many people in the office, or when patients do not keep an appointment, I connect to the platform. Sometimes I also work a few hours in the evening during the week or on Saturday morning from home. »

On the other side of the Atlantic, Richard, 44, is a salaried emergency doctor in a hospital located on a small island in the French West Indies, and exudes “800 euros to 1,000 euros” nearly each month whereas additionally making the most of low moments: “I have on-call duty two days a month during which not much happens. I’m taking this opportunity to arrange a few meetings on the platform. »

Both know the limits of the exercise. “We help patients who do not have a GP or who do not want – or cannot – wait for an appointment. With a good interview, we can make a good diagnosis, and it is always better than self-medication.explains Marie. But, in most cases, I tell the patient to go see him if he doesn’t feel better the next day, because the clinical examination still remains a priority. »

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“Pill renewal, nasopharyngitis… It’s basic medicine, added Richard. But I see myself as a first resort: for an ear infection, for example, I will give an analgesic to relieve the pain while waiting for the patient to go see their doctor.. »

If Marie adopted this formula, it is also for the security that remote consultation offers, because she sometimes felt threatened in practices by patients to whom she refused a stop or a prescription: “Behind the screen at least, I don’t fear aggression. » Another advantage, according to her, lies in not being too involved with patients: “Not running my own practice lightens my mental load, I only see patients once, I don’t have to follow up with them and their problems don’t haunt me when I’m on leave. »

For the two professionals, this distancing from traditional practice also results from a very gloomy view of the status of doctor in France. Richard spent more than ten years in hospital in mainland France and says he suffered from difficult working conditions and a lack of financial recognition. Mary also judges that “the attending physician is not respected” by the general public authorities, who, she says, pay poorly: “26.50 euros per consultation is an insult to the position and to my skills. » By the patients, too, who “sometimes come to us to shop for medicines, as they would go to the supermarket.”