Sound Sleep Guru

Refining My Webside Manner

In the age of COVID-19 I’ve become interested in optimizing my “webside manner,” the younger cousin of bedside manner. It’s definitely a thing I’m working on now that I have my own sleep telehealth practice. And now that we’re a year into the pandemic and I’ve been doing almost exclusively telehealth in that time, I feel much more confident about my virtual skills evaluating patients with sleep disorders. But I have to admit, I still worry sometimes that there will be a technology failure I am not able to fix, especially with all of the crazy weather going around. Here are some of the things I have done to practice good “webside manner”:

    • Put my phone on do not disturb
    • Close down all email and programs on the computer
    • Always position myself in the center of the screen
    • Try to maintain regular eye contact in the camera
    • Test the microphone and webcam at the beginning of the day, updates can make changes to settings
    • Tidy up my home office space and move any clutter out of view
    • Position the camera so no distractions are in view (windows, screens)
    • Upgraded my webcam, internet speed, and lighting
    • Remind myself to stay calm in case of a technology failure and have a back up link/method of communication in the event of an internet outage
    • Allow a buffer of time before and after visits

What strategies are you using to improve your webside manner?

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