The importance of telehealth has become an increasingly popular option for individuals to seek treatment for illness and disease without ever leaving the comfort of their own home.
For ideal health outcomes, the patient will just need access to a smartphone, tablet or computer, and they are ready to take their health into the digital age. Telehealth industry research tells us that wo thirds of patients are willing to see a doctor over video, and one in five patients even said they would switch doctors to see one who offered telehealth. Can telehealth change the outcomes of your patients? We think so.
Improving Hospital Patient Satisfaction
With the introduction of telehealth, patients are in control of their wellbeing with accessible, on-demand healthcare. A 2017 study on patient satisfaction indicators conducted by American Well reported that receiving the right treatment at the right time means the patient can be on their way to recovery faster, diminishing the opportunity for conditions to worsen, resulting in better patient outcomes and higher patient satisfaction.
Improves Patient Accessibility
Patients are delaying healthcare for both minor and serious health issues for a variety of reasons including cost and access. For those in rural areas, visiting a doctor can take hours. With travel and unpaid time off work, a 20-minute appointment becomes a costly all-day event, and follow-up visits to manage chronic issues seem almost impossible. Telehealth allows these patients to bypass those issues while encouraging making and keeping appointments. The need for accessible medicine is so prominent that recent FCC proposals included funding for telehealth equipment in rural clinics of over $400 million annually.
Allows Doctors to See More Patients
With more appointment slots available, telehealth offers an opportunity for doctors to see a greater number of patients without the restraints of available exam rooms, and number of on-duty nurses. This benefit allows physicians to address illness at the start, a key factor in the outcomes of patient’s health.
Saves Healthcare System Money
According to Merritt Hawkins, a healthcare consulting firm, the average wait time to see a doctor is 18 days. With a looming physician shortage, this problem is only expected to get worse. For those with immediate needs, these long waiting periods means patients often skip their practitioner and head straight to the emergency room, costing our healthcare system a high price.
Telehealth is a new frontier in healthcare and offers promising outcomes for both our patients and our healthcare system. Available for Medicaid reimbursement in 48 states, telehealth could take your practice to the next level and help to provide your patients with the best services possible.