Telemedicine has been used in limited ways for several decades. However, only recently has it become mainstream. In fact, 75 percent of survey respondents reported that they were interested in trying telemedicine, according to research published by Software Advice. Telehealth continues to transform healthcare and has been shown to improve businesses by providing an alternative mode of communication between providers and patients. A study by the National Business Group of Health found that approximately 96 percent of all large employers now offer some telehealth benefits. Here is a look at some of the top ways that telehealth can improve a business.
Advantages of Telehealth Software
Telehealth software is designed to recreate a typical office visit without the patient having to leave the comfort of home. Both primary care providers and specialists can enjoy the benefits of telehealth software. With telehealth software, providers can diagnose and treat patients remotely, while also maintaining a trusted relationship.
Telehealth services promote greater patient engagement with remote monitoring and allow clinicians to educate patients on how to care for themselves between visits. Telehealth services have shown to help overcome common barriers to essential health services caused by the distance between providers and patients. Here are just a few ways that telehealth can improve a business.
Allows Patients to Consult with Medical Staff Remotely
Patient access to quality healthcare services has become a significant problem in the U.S. According to the American Hospital Association, an estimated 57 million Americans currently reside in rural areas. These individuals often face challenges like physician shortages and the inability to travel long distances to clinics and hospitals. This strain on the healthcare system also forces patients to wait a significant amount of time to get an appointment, and when they do acquire an appointment, the patient must take time from their day to travel to the office and wait in a waiting room.
Telehealth services enable providers to connect with patients quickly and from any location that has internet access. When elements like travel and waiting rooms are eliminated, providers are also able to see a larger number of patients in a day compared to traditional in-person visits. Telehealth also reduces rural barriers as patients can connect with a licensed physician remotely. It also aids patients who have limited mobility and may struggle with traveling to health care facilities.
Prevents Spread of Sickness
Despite strict cleaning protocols in clinics and hospitals, the spread of sickness is still possible when multiple ill individuals gather or touch common items. Crowded waiting rooms are especially high risk due to the number of people in a small space. If an individual catches a cold or other illness from a different patient, there may be a need for further health care which can create a backlog of patients.
By staying home, patients can avoid the risk of exposure while still receiving quality care from their physicians. There are also fewer risks for staff members when fewer ill patients visit the facility. Less cleaning and sanitation are also required when the volume of patients visiting the facility is lower. In this regard, telehealth services can help businesses save time, money, and resources.
Doctors Can Deliver Care Completely Remote
With advances in technology, healthcare providers can deliver comprehensive care to patients remotely. Mobile health solutions can be accessed via laptops, PCs, tablets, and smartphones. As of 2017, there were 325,000 smartphone apps available that provide everything from health management to disease education, according to the Journal of Medical Internet Research. Audio links and high-resolution cameras allow providers to initiate video conferencing with patients. Live video streaming enables providers to diagnose and treat patients remotely.
Remote patient monitoring (RPM) is another popular digital technology that healthcare facilities can use to enhance health services. RPM involves the instant collection and transmission of medical and health data for diagnosis and treatment purposes. Providers can monitor patients at home, such as their vital signs, blood oxygen levels, blood sugar, weight, and electrocardiogram output. Store-and-forward telemedicine technologies allow providers to capture, store and transmit health information like X-rays, CAT scans, and MRIs between providers and specialists.
Work with Hartman When Choosing Your Telehealth Software
The medical world is constantly changing and businesses must find ways to adapt to new technologies. With a rising shortage of clinician providers, hospitals and other facilities are making the necessary move to telehealth platforms. Telemedicine has the ability to expand patient services to reach more individuals without sacrificing patient care.
Quality telehealth software offers many functions and features that make it easy to communicate with patients via live video and access important health information to aid in diagnosis, treatment, and monitoring. For help choosing the right telehealth platform for a small business, contact the expert business consultants at Hartman Executive Advisors.