3 Ways Telehealth Technology is Changing the Health Care Landscape
July 10, 2018
Society is evolving at a rapid pace when it comes to technology, and one of the industries that’s benefited the most is health care. Telehealth technology is still very much in the early stages of development and implementation, but telemedicine software has already come a long way in the relatively short time it’s been around.
More and more laws, policies, and regulations are being changed and created at both the federal and state levels to advance telehealth technologies and move the entire industry forward. Recent statistics indicate that about 67% of health care professionals (physicians, nurses, etc.) are either currently using some form of telehealth technology now, or are planning to in the next few years. There are a few reasons that explain these telemedicine trends, but here are a couple of the most important.
Making Services More Available: First and foremost, telehealth technology has helped improve availability and convenience in getting treatment for a vast amount of patients. For example, elderly people who may have trouble getting around no longer have to make a whole trip just to go in and see their doctor about a question on their prescription or questionable side-effects. This sort of availability is especially useful in rural areas of the country where a patient might be an hour or more drive from their physician.
Helping to Lower Costs: The convenience aspect is just one way it’s helping people every day. Another is in the overall cost benefits it could have on the entire industry. This sort of setup allows for more patients to be seen and treated in an efficient manner, which ultimately will help lower costs. Many believe that telemedicine could potentially deliver more than $6 billion a year in healthcare savings to U.S. companies.
Increasing Overall Quality of Care: The best thing about telehealth technologies is that it can do these things without sacrificing quality or level of care. In fact, with more time being made available to doctors thanks to the ease and efficiency of these services it could be argued the level of care is going up. Approximately 21% of patients who have used telemedicine services reported that the quality of care was similar to or higher than an in-person visit.
Telehealth technologies are still improving, and it remains to be seen just how far these new trends can be taken, but so far the results speak for themselves. Telemental health is the new way to do behavioral health care in many ways and for reasons likes this that’s a good thing.