How the rise of Telehealth is reshaping the way the medical industry does business
March 23, 2021
What is Telehealth?
Telehealth is defined as the delivery healthcare services to patients outside of a typical healthcare facility. Traditionally, this was done via telephone where a patient could call in and get answers to questions from qualified medical staff, or even their own physician.
The advent of virtual meeting platforms and the popularity of mobile technology has allowed services such as HD video meetings and flexibility in call location to be added to the Telehealth toolkit. Since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, demand has sky-rocketed as many patients are unable to see their physicians for non-essential reasons.
While nothing will totally replace the in-person care required for emergencies and other necessary medical functions such as surgery, there are numerous use cases for Telehealth, which can greatly improve the efficiency of visits and provides a lot of benefits for both patients and providers.
Benefits to Patients
Mobile Telehealth is a big industry, and has grown even faster over the past year or so. Allowing patients to be able to connect with their provider when and where it’s convenient for them is a big deal, since many patients would otherwise be unable to see a physician due to pandemic restrictions.
As many as 60% of patients surveyed by Fiercehealthcare said they want to use Telehealthcare moving forward, even after the pandemic ends. It’s easy to see why, as there is no risk of exposure to Covid-19 or any other contagions when consulting with their physician virtually, which is especially important for high-risk patients.
Telehealth is also great for patients who live in rural areas or find it difficult to travel, as it eliminates the need to commute anywhere and patients can oftentimes get access to an even wider array of services and specialists than they could in-person due to being able to connect virtually.
Additionally, patients generally end up saving money through using Tele-heath because they are less likely to require travelling to visit multiple physicians, and oftentimes the costs of Telehealth sessions themselves may be lower compared to in-person visits.
Benefits to Providers
Just as patients have begun to see a lot of benefits to Telehealthcare, so too are healthcare providers themselves realizing how much this type of service can help them.
Telehealth can provide much needed work-life balance for providers, as they can perform much of their consultative services from home without needing to be at their office or in a clinic/hospital.
Telehealth allows providers to see more patients in less time on average, while also giving them more time to spend with each individual patient.
There seem to be fewer no-shows for sessions via Telehealth, which means providers don’t have to deal with cancellations or delays as often.
In many cases, the level of care between in-person consultations and Telehealth meetings are comparable, meaning there isn’t a loss of level of care. This reason, among others, is probably why 57% of healthcare providers had a more favorable view of Telehealth compared to before the pandemic started.
Benefits to Businesses/Payers
As a business, you may be providing healthcare and/or insurance coverage for your employees and team members. Telehealth can also benefit your business as it tends to provide similar level of service for a lower cost.
Additionally, there are fewer out of network transfers. As RingCentral points out “When a patient needs to see a specialist outside of the network because there isn’t a specialist within the network that’s nearby, the health insurance company loses revenue. Telehealth services allow insurers to regain that lost revenue; a specialist within the network who doesn’t necessarily work in the patient’s geographical area can still see the patient during a virtual consultation.”
RingCentral can improve Telehealth service
RingCentral is a leading unified communications platform that provides a suite of voice, video and text-based communication services all in one place. They have a robust set of meeting options, an all-in-one app that’s mobile-optimized, and a strong security suite to protect your privacy, which is a must in the healthcare industry. You can even save your recorded meetings to a secure cloud storage space that allows only those you permit to access and download videos for future use.
Having a secure and stable HD video meeting tool available to use for Telehealth is a game-changer because having that face-to-face meetings instead of just talking on the phone is really important for a lot of people. According to research by RingCentral, 75% of doctors, urgent care and ER visits could be handled via Telehealth phone or video, which just further reinforces how their unified communications presence can save patients, providers, businesses and the healthcare industry time and money while providing quality service that can ensure peace of mind.
Positive Results™ is a training development and cloud solutions company that analyzes the business process of organizations, and implements training and tools to solve for any gaps we find.
We are a proud partner of RingCentral and can help businesses install or customize a unified communications suite, including RingCentral Video, a secure online meeting application that allows you to communicate through voice, video and text chat with Telehealth providers in a secure, private environment.
We assist companies in adjusting their RingCentral settings to be optimized for security, privacy and ease of use. We can also provide recommended best practices for your business to optimally utilize RingCentral for Telehealth purposes.
If you have additional questions or need support, contact us at:
Positive Results™ Custom Business Solutions