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The Importance of Telemedicine

Telemedicine is the future of healthcare and is the forefront of a movement towards a more technologically advanced healthcare system. Telemedicine allows people to use their phone to access their healthcare options and reach their doctor within seconds.

If that doesn’t convince you about the significance of telemedicine than maybe one of these reasons will:


More Convenient and Accessible Patient Care

According to a recent Cisco global survey, 74% of patients prefer easy access to healthcare services over in-person interactions with providers.

In today’s healthcare world, convenience is key.

Adding telehealth to your practice offers patients simple, on-demand care – without the usual wasted time and cost of most in-person visits.  Patients who live in remote locations, or who are homebound or just can’t take off time from work, can access care virtually. Video conferencing, smartphone apps, and online management systems connect more patients with providers than ever before.

Healthcare Cost Savings

Remote analysis and monitoring services and electronic data storage significantly reduce healthcare service costs, saving money for you, your patients, and insurance companies. Telemedicine also reduces unnecessary non-urgent ER visits and eliminates transportation expenses for regular checkups.

Recently, the American Hospital Association reported on a telemedicine program that saved 11% in costs and more than tripled ROI for investors.

Beyond these general cost-savings, telehealth can help boost doctors’ revenue by turning on-call hours into billable time, attracting new patients, reducing no-shows, and even reducing overhead for physicians who decide to switch to a flexible work-from-home model for part of the week.

Extended Specialist and Referring Physician Access

With telehealth, patients in rural or remote areas benefit from quicker and more convenient specialist access. In the U.S., for every 100,000 rural patients, there are only 43 specialists available. These patients endure longer appointment commutes and have trouble accessing lifesaving consultations for specific diseases or chronic care plans.

Telemedicine offers better access to more specialists. You can refer your patients to the specific physicians they need, regardless of location. Or, if you’re a specialist looking to expand your patient population, telemedicine can help you reach a wider geographic region.

Increased Patient Engagement

When patients are committed to their own healthcare goals, it leads to lower costs and improved health. Ernst & Young Senior Advisory Services Manager Jan Oldenburg toldHealthcare IT News that “”[t]he high cost of disengaged consumers affects everybody.”

Engaging your patients through telemedicine can help them maintain appointments and care schedules. Increased engagement initiatives can also curb obesity rates and tobacco use by helping you to encourage your patients’ healthy lifestyle choices.

Not only do virtual visits reassure patients that their doctors are available and involved in their care, it makes it much easier for them to reach out with questions, report early warning signs, and make a follow-up appointment to make sure they’re on track.

Better Patient Care Quality

Telemedicine offers patient-centered approaches, such as improved timeliness of care. This is critical to quality patient care. Patients can address healthcare issues quickly with real-time urgent care consultations and learn about treatment options within minutes.

A new study shows that telemedicine patients score lower for depression, anxiety, and stress, and have 38% fewer hospital admissions.

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