Raymond Douglas, MD, PhD: The Shift to Telemedicine in Ophthalmology


Raymond Douglas, MD, PhD discusses how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected his clinical practice and potentially accelerated technological innovation as a whole.

During the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) 2020 Virtual Conference, new technologies and innovations were a running theme in many of the presentations and symposiums. Topics ranged from wearable technologies, virtual reality, as well as new imaging techniques and discoveries.

In an interview with HCPLive®, Raymond Douglas, MD, PhD, Director, Orbital and Thyroid Eye Disease Program, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, discussed in particular this shift to telemedicine and the impact it has had on his clinical practice.

“The biggest thing is that now we are — I think — much better able via video technology,” he said. “What you’re going to see transpire throughout all of ophthalmology is remote testing.”

He expected this promising area of remote testing to fully make its way into the thyroid eye disease specialty and influence the procedures of care. Referencing his studies that were presented at AAO, he explained that many of his patient-participants were entirely examined over video.

Douglas also expressed optimism about the increasing capabilities of telemedicine in the future.

Furthermore, he noted that he has largely relied on telemedicine in his practice, and acknowledged that much of what he does can be carried out via such technology — with in-person corroboration to supplement.

“I think that what we’re going to see in the very near future are apps and video examinations of actual measurements,” he noted. “Therefore, not only [will you be able to] get the history and physical exam of what you can see, but also things that can actually be measured onsite with the help of the patient.”

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