When the COVID-19 pandemic was declared by the World Health Organization (WHO), in El Salvador the Directorate General of the Salvadoran Social Security Institute (Instituto Salvadoreño del Seguro Social – ISSS) put forward a new form of care. This was authorized by the ISSS board in agreement No. 2020-0651 ABR. This made it possible to implement virtual care through telemedicine, known as Dr. ISSS en línea (Dr. ISSS online). Direct medical care was provided through video consultations online (http://consultaenlinea.isss.gob.sv/) or by calling 127 and selecting option 2-2. This service also handles medication prescriptions and electronically issues incapacity certificates within the ISSS network.
It is used as a management centre and ensures intersectoral and inter-institutional coordination to guarantee the continuity of medical care. It combines the principles of participation and solidarity through technological innovation, allowing for an increase in coverage at the national level for both users and non-users of the ISSS, achieving a balance between cost and profitability.
To offer effective care, it was necessary to innovate in terms of the profile of the doctors delivering telemedicine. The support of the ISSS central administration has enabled the innovative development of this good practice.