Change is coming to health care.
As telecommunications technology becomes more powerful, and more prevalent, health care providers are using it to evaluate, diagnose, treat and deliver services to more patients.
However, many providers don’t recognize the other benefits available through telehealth services.
The Benefits of Telehealth Services
Many health care systems are already enjoying the benefits of telehealth and telemedicine in areas like hospital-to-hospital teletransfers – significantly reducing adverse events and increasing efficiency. Other providers are leveraging telemedicine and telehealth services in areas like preventative care and chronic health management.
There are other benefits, both direct and indirect, to telehealth and telemedicine. These include:
Increased Access to Specialist Care
Many rural areas don’t have access to specialist care. Often they don’t have access to any care at all. In addition, specialists have limited ways of reaching patients in need of their services. Telehealth can bridge the gap, connecting doctors to the patients that need them most.
Reduced Expenses and Health Care Costs
Telehealth can have an immediate benefit to reducing the cost of health care. Transporting patients and travel expenses can be eliminated. A simple telehealth session can even eliminate the need for a visit or a hospital stay. Costs can be minimized for many treatments and programs.
Improved Health Outcomes
In the right circumstances, telehealth services can increase the engagement of patients in their health care, which can lead to significant improvements in health outcomes. One study of a cardiac health program that utilized telehealth and telemedicine resulted in 38% fewer hospital admissions, and reduced hospital re-admissions as much as 31%.
Increased Health Care Efficiencies
Telehealth and telemedicine should not replace in-person treatment or become a substitute for an effective patient-doctor relationship. It should enhance it. Doctors provide care during an in-person appointment, but also deliver flexible and convenient additional care with check-ups, follow-up visits, and education sessions through remote telehealth services.
Increased Doctor and Patient Satisfaction
Many patients struggle to maintain a treatment program. It’s not convenient and they don’t see the immediate benefit. Follow-up visits and sessions are more convenient when delivered with telehealth. Doctors struggling to maintain a healthy work/life balance appreciate the ease and convenience of telemedicine. Remote sessions reduce the stress for providers.
How to Leverage Telehealth and Telemedicine Today
Launching telehealth services for your facility or health care system isn’t difficult, but there are a few things you should consider before implementing a plan.
First, make sure you are using the right technology for the doctors and patients. While a smart phone and a laptop might work, other options designed for health care can improve the value. The right technology can facilitate the patient-doctor relationship and provide a scalable, long-term solution.
Next, consider how to roll out the technology. Start in a small area, focused on a signal need, and over time launch it in other areas. This will ensure you are maximizing the benefit to patients and doctors while reducing disruption to operations.
Ready to get started? Schedule a demo and consultation session today with Innovator Health to see what a powerful telehealth solution can do for you.