The coronavirus pandemic has impacted the healthcare industry significantly. While telehealth services were used prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, the move towards telehealth has increased significantly in recent months. Both patients and healthcare providers must adapt to a new normal, which means limiting direct contact and utilizing innovative technologies designed to streamline health appointments. There are many HIPAA-compliant telehealth software offerings designed to save money, reach more patients, and avoid the transfer of communicable viruses and infections. As not all telehealth software is the same, it is important to compare capabilities and functions before making a decision.
What To Look For In HIPAA Compliant Telehealth Software
Telehealth software has the ability to simplify the delivery of healthcare services. This can be achieved by finding a HIPAA-compliant telehealth software that meets the unique needs of the business, as well as certain industry standards that help keep sensitive patient information safe. As even the best telehealth software can have its challenges, organizations should look for a vendor that offers quality customer service. If a problem arises, the customer support team has to be equipped to handle it quickly and efficiently.
EHR Integration Capabilities
More than 95 percent of hospitals use certified electronic health record (EHR) technology, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. By integrating a telehealth platform into an EHR system, healthcare facilities can improve clinical workflows. Today, most telehealth providers design their systems to be easily integrated with EHR platforms. This allows for the quick and easy transfer of patient information from one interface to the other. EHR integration capabilities are crucial, as they prevent the need to have to enter the same data into the system twice, which can create confusion and cause errors.
Ease Of Patient Use
Telehealth software encourages patients to take a more active role in their healthcare. When choosing telehealth software, healthcare organizations should consider how easy it will be for patients to log on and use the platform. Not all patients are technologically-adept and will require a simple platform that can be accessed without too many clicks. Telehealth software should also be available on a variety of platforms for patient conveniences, such as computers, smartphones, and tablets. A software’s bandwidth and connectivity capabilities need to be analyzed to ensure that the video is clear and does not slow down or cut out.
Ability To Improve Internal Workflow
HIPAA-compliant telehealth software can help improve internal workflow. With an integrated telehealth experience, healthcare providers can practice solely within the telehealth platform. After logging into the platform, providers can view incoming patient requests and see which patients are in the virtual waiting room. Within the platform, providers can also access patient medical records and notes. During the appointment, the provider can document information and then create a visit summary without ever having to log out. When integrated with an EHR, the systems are able to communicate with one another to enhance internal workflow.
Accessibility To Patient Documentation & Medical History
Healthcare providers rely on patient documentation and medical history to aid in the diagnosis and treatment of a variety of conditions. Therefore, having easy access to patient documents and health history is critical during telehealth appointments. HIPAA-compliant telehealth software often allows providers to easily obtain patient health documents while logged onto the platform. This is due to a bi-directional interface that uses two-way communication between the EMR and telehealth platforms. Any information that you would generally find in a paper chart, such as medications, diagnoses, allergies, and immunization dates, can generally be found in an electronic medical record.
Reach Out To Hartman Executive Advisors
Telemedicine is an emerging healthcare technology that has the potential to transform your business operations. For help finding the best HIPAA-compliant telehealth software or for questions about other business solutions, reach out to the knowledgeable business advisors at Hartman Executive Advisors.
Need more information about how to choose the correct telehealth software? Visit our telehealth consulting page for more information.