ORLANDO, Fla. — Videotaping and analysis systems create an added value for patients, and provide additional revenue for pedorthists and other allied health professionals. With just a few extra minutes during each patient appointment, practitioners can offer a new service to their patients and reap significant benefits, according to Jeff Fink, HBPE, CPed (C), from OKAPED in Vancouver, and Graham Archer, BSc (kin), CPed (C), vice president of Kintec Footlabs in Vancouver.
To be able to use this video with patients, practitioners need just 2 to 3 minutes to shoot, 3 to 5 minutes to review the footage and analyze any problems with the patients’ gait, and 2 to 3 minutes to explain the findings to the patient. The main benefit for patients is the ability to unequivocally prove that orthotic intervention is necessary; others include the ability to view video in slow motion, capture multiple images, from more than one viewpoint at once, and replay gait footage from a patient with limited mobility, especially when dealing with the geriatric population.
The equipment needed to set up the proper video capturing environment includes just a few — not necessarily expensive — items. To capture the patient’s gait from several different angles, it would be ideal to set up more than one camera in a well-lit area with a walkway or treadmill. If using a treadmill, practitioners should take into account that some patients may not be able to walk on the device for long periods of time.
Other pieces of necessary equipment include a display monitor or television for viewing the captured video and extra storage for saving the patient video files. Another option is to upgrade the lighting and video equipment to create a professional gait lab within the office.
“[You can] take this video and upload it right to the patients file,” Archer said here at the 2010 North American Pedorthic Congress. “You can send those reports to a patient to a referral, to a patient, to a third party payer.”
By adding just a small charge to their fees, practitioners can receive a return on their minimal investment.