Telemedicine Is Easy, Collaborative and Secure
How efficient is your healthcare process? If your family of four has a total of ten different daily medications and you are constantly running to the pharmacy at different times to pick them up you are likely not that efficient. If one of those prescriptions is for thyroid maintenance, cholesterol, or high blood pressure, you likely need to have blood work done to make sure that your dosage levels are correct. If this is the case, is your family able to coordinate some of these appointments? An efficient telemedicine software platform can allow some regular appointments and simple tests to be conducted over the telephone, without an actual office visit.
Telemedicine is the use of any type of communication technology to provide healthcare services from a distance. In its simplest form it is an automated phone call from a pharmacy informing you that a monthly recurring prescription is ready to be picked up. In its more extensive form it can be submitting a pacemaker reading over the telephone line or a telemedicine video conferencing appointment with a therapist, instead of an office visit. In a world where technologies are advancing at record pace, it should not be a surprise that the telemedicine software platform allows patients to submit heart rate and blood pressure readings without a visit to a traditional doctor’s office.
The four main chronic conditions cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), diabetes and heart disease account for nearly 70% of all healthcare spending in America. To properly diagnose and maintain these chronic conditions, patients have to make multiple office visits for physical examinations, as well as tests.
If, for example, one of every four required visits could by handled remotely several benefits could occur. First, doctors could “see” more patients in a day if some of the visits were remote. Patients could limit by 25% the number of office visits they need to make. Healthcare costs can decrease because office time is also decreased. In fact, research indicates that telemedicine could possibly deliver as much as a $6 billion healthcare savings to U.S. companies every year.
Telemedicine research indicates that this remote care option is a popular choice among people who visit a psychiatrist or psychologist. For instance, telepsychiatry patients are significantly less likely to cancel appointments. They are also less likely to not show up for an appointment and not call. The option of a video conference is especially appealing to patients who have anxiety about leaving their home or visiting a crowded office.
The telemedicine software platform has the potential to change healthcare as we know it. Telemedicine trends indicate that the number of patients using these services will significantly increase in the next three years. While 350,000 patients used this option in 2013, the number is expected to grow to 7 million by 2018. Are you one of the 64% of Americans who say that they would be willing to try a televisit with their doctor?