Do you consider incorporating telehealth technologies into your business and providing telehealth services to your patients? You’re not the only one who feels this way. According to a FAIR Health analysis, nationwide telehealth utilization increased by 53 percent from 2016 to 2017.
In the analysis, which examined the national insurance claims filed for alternate settings of care, this is much greater than any other area of service investigated for that variable.
Urgent care centers saw a 14 percent rise in use, retail clinics saw a 7 percent increase, and ambulatory surgical centers saw a 6 percent increase. In addition, according to a JAMA study, yearly telehealth consultations among privately insured patients climbed by 52 percent over the period from 2005 to 2014, and then by 261 percent from 2015 to 2017.
Why is there such a surge in the utilization of and enthusiasm for telehealth? It has various features that help both providers and patients. Eight of the benefits of telehealth are listed below.
Lessens Health-Care Challenges in Rural Areas
Its capacity to overcome the challenges of providing care in remote locations is among the most important telehealth advantages. “One out of every four people living in rural areas said they couldn’t access the healthcare they needed recently,” according to a recent poll conducted by NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
According to an NPR story, “roughly a quarter of those indicated the reason was that their healthcare site was too far or difficult to get to.” In addition, the number of rural hospitals is on the decline. Since 2010, more than a hundred have closed, and hundreds more are considered vulnerable, according to NPR.
Some of these issues can be addressed with the help of telehealth. “In particular, rural health care institutions stand to gain from telemedicine technology because it efficiently and successfully reduces the distances between nodes of rural care, which can reduce patients’ driving time, make healthcare more accessible for patients who live in communities with few specialist options, and ensuring patient safety,” according to an article from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.
Reduces the Amount of Pressure on the Healthcare System
In the United States, patient access to care is a major issue. “Patient care access is not a reality for many patients across the country,” according to a Patient Engagement HIT article. Patient care access is fraught with difficulties, ranging from scheduling conflicts to find transportation to the clinician’s office.” “Half of U.S. adults struggled to receive healthcare on weekends and evenings without traveling to an emergency department,” according to a poll conducted by The Commonwealth Fund.
Patients may face difficulties scheduling appointments with their primary care physician and specialists, and they may be forced to wait a long time to enter the facility. It takes a significant amount of time out of their day when they finally do plan and keep appointments.
In the next years, these difficulties are likely to become even worse. According to a study from Healthcare IT News, more than 75 million Baby Boomers will soon be eligible for Medicare, putting more pressure on an already overburdened health system.
Timely Care Is Expedited
The capacity to quickly refer patients to the appropriate practitioner is a significant barrier in healthcare. Patients may make needlessly frequent visits to the emergency room, urgent care clinic, or their primary care physician on their route to the best provider. “Telehealth can lead to more immediate care,” according to a Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia report.
A swollen eye in a three-year-old may be so unpleasant that he or she refuses to open it and sobs when it is touched. To make matters worse, they have a 102-degree temperature. We can get a greater sense of the situation with an on-demand video visit than we can with a phone call, and in this scenario, we would likely send the patient to see a provider right away since it could be a more serious bacterial infection of the soft tissue around the eye.”
Patients with Limited Mobility will Benefit From this Service.
Telehealth can make a major difference in the well-being of patients who have difficulty getting to healthcare facilities.
“Treatment supplied via technology from a doctor off-site may be the future of ensuring elders get the healthcare they need when and where they need it most,” according to a U.S. News & World Report piece.
Patients over the age of 65 aren’t the only ones who have mobility challenges. According to a HealthLeaders article, “Remote access can be a big quality of life improvement for patients who don’t have a dependable mode of transportation or who have mobility issues or disabilities that make traveling challenges. This is especially true for people who have chronic illnesses that necessitate repeated visits to the doctor.”
Retaining independence is a key concern for many elderly patients. Telehealth has the potential to assist people in avoiding institutionalization and dependence on others.
“From innovative linked care platforms to the Internet of Things,” according to a mHealth Intelligence research, “telehealth is teaching today’s seniors (and tomorrow’s soon-to-be seniors) that they can live out their golden years in their very own homes.”
Telehealth services in UAE and anywhere in the world, in addition to their medicinal advantages, can also give financial advantages.
“Net cost savings per telemedicine appointment was calculated to vary from $19–$121 per session,” according to a recent study published in The American Journal of Emergency Medicine. “The majority of the cost savings from the telemedicine program was earned in redirecting patients from emergency departments,” according to a HealthLeaders article about the study. Cost reductions ranged from $309 to more than $1,500 for each prevented emergency room visit.”
According to Healthcare Dive, research by health insurance Humana discovered that “telemedicine appointments were paid out at an average of $38 – a far smaller price tag than the $114 cost of a face-to-face consultation.”
Provides a Wide Range of Telehealth Technology
There are a variety of telehealth solutions to select from, which is wonderful news for companies contemplating adding it to their clinical arsenal. A list of the several forms of telehealth technology that can aid diabetic patients can be found in a Mayo Clinic article. These are some of them:
- Reminders for preventative care by email, text, and/or phone.
- Diabetic retinopathy can be detected using mobile retinal photo screening.
- Testing supplies and drugs can be ordered through an online system.
- View test results, make appointments, request prescription refills, and send an email to your doctor using an online patient portal.
- An app that calculates the amount of insulin required.
- Upload information to a physician via a mobile phone or another device.
In order to provide better care for diabetes patients, organizations could use these and other technology to improve existing services or create new ones.
Telemedicine Services Have a Lot of Applications
There are a variety of different ailments and circumstances that telemedicine can aid with, in addition to diabetes patients.
Pediatrics, psychiatry, and radiology are among the programs offered by the Massachusetts General Hospital Center for TeleHealth. The Center for Telehealth “…offers patients and consulting providers virtual choices for access to the expertise of Mass General clinicians,” according to its website. Telehealth service users employ familiar and easy-to-use tools to interact, cooperate, and share information from a distance. Such tools enable doctors to communicate with patients. And with one another — in the most convenient and appropriate manner for the patient’s medical requirements.”
Finally, there’s Frederick Memorial Hospital’s Chronic Care Management Program (CCMP), a telemedicine experimental program (FMH). According to a press release, it was created to “monitor high-risk chronic disease patients who may not be eligible for home health care, have been releases from home health care, or have declining home health care.” The hospital to reveales in January that the program has decreased enrolled patients’ hospital readmissions by 89 percent and emergency department visits by 49 percent.
“Much of CCMP’s success is due to the human ties we develop with our patients as well as the amazing technology with the telemonitors,” Lisa Hogan, chronic care management team leader at FMH, is quoted as saying in the statement. We call every patient at least once a week to discuss their progress and help them develop personal goals. As we work alongside kids, it’s fantastic to see their independence and growth.”
These are just some of the benefits of telehealth. The American Center for Psychiatry and Neurology employs telemedicine in the UAE. Their highly trained psychiatrists and psychologists are available to help you in person, over the phone, or via telepsychiatry using the most up-to-date and secured technology.
They’re tearing down barriers and providing you the freedom to receive the assistance you need whenever and wherever you want it. Call them now at 800 ACPN (2276) to learn more and to book an appointment.