The telemedicine industry comes across as one of the most profitable sectors under the current circumstances. Here’s what the numbers say:
● From February 2020 to April 2020, telehealth bookings for office visits and outpatient care have increased by 78 times.
● In the coming years, $250 billion of US healthcare may be infused into virtual care, implying how seriously the government looks at this opportunity.
Two primary reasons are responsible for these numbers:
● it is wise to stay indoors and get medical help at home in a pandemic, and
● the process added considerable value—some people being referred to hospital facilities while some helped remotely is better than everybody rushing to the hospital for an introductory consultation.
Besides, telemedicine technologies also educate patients in the right way, unlike other freely available unmonitored online resources. The ones that diagnose even a seasonal runny nose as cancer, remember?
So, how did telemedicine become more penetrable? And, how did it shift the focus from hospitals and clinics to the home? Let’s discuss.
Feature #1: Telemedicine has given better treatment outcomes
An apparent reason behind a firm trust in hospital-based treatment is its high success rate. And, the treatment success owes to the availability of all resources and expertise to handle these resources simultaneously.
However, when telemedicine came into existence and bloomed, it became a means of increasing the success rate of treatment modes in general. It is one of the significant reasons why home care is emerging as the first choice for many.
Besides, real-time patient health monitoring is a key influencer in this respect. Let’s see how.
● by using telemedicine devices and prescribing biosensors, a practitioner can closely be in touch with their patients while giving a consultation remotely,
● they can establish a better diagnosis by examining all possible factors thoroughly,
● the treatment outcomes will be more accurate, and
● emergency room readmissions would also see a fall with regular telemedicine follow-ups.
Feature #2: Medical care is more accessible with telemedicine
For a large population of the world, especially those living in remote rural areas, medical care is not yet available at a scale as it should have been.
Even for the people living in cities, the long waiting queues at hospitals and the intimidating atmosphere of the setting is in itself a barrier. Such situations ultimately decrease the penetration and accessibility of medical facilities in any country.
With telemedicine gaining acceptance, anyone can seek advice from expert professionals remotely without visiting a hospital every time.
Telemedicine apps are about e-visits and help users track their parameters in real-time, completing the necessary groundwork for meaningful medical consultation.
Feature #3: Telemedicine is already saving a lot of money
According to a study, the monthly costs of a patient’s healthcare were reduced to $576 by telehealth options.
And Houston’s telehealth program managed to save $2468, which the healthcare system would otherwise spend on unnecessary emergency visits.
It’s challenging to seek elaborate medical assistance for many — “financial burden” would be the right word to say. It is because:
● using an emergency room or having forced readmissions only adds to the expenditures,
● the advice and consultation for emergency room admission are often uncalled for, and
● alternative modalities could help almost equally.
With telemedicine, you can get your case reviewed remotely with all necessary parameters tracked and displayed to the professionals. Ultimately, making a wise and informed decision becomes a good possibility.
Feature #4: Patient satisfaction is directly proportional to telehealth
In a medical condition or an emergency, you’d want to reach the doctor as soon as possible. You’d also want the appointment and treatment to be hassle-free.
No doubt, it is the kind of convenience everybody wants.
That’s where telemedicine improves patient engagement. It helps patients feel more confident and secure in a medical facility. You get to know the doctors, possible treatments, and aftercare before you step into anything significant.
Telemedicine apps are becoming more participative for patients too. Everything contributes to patients feeling more satisfied with treatments, so they no longer need to visit the clinics physically.
Feature #5: Telemedicine has decreased pathogen exposure
Big hospitals to small outpatient clinics—all health settings can witness the footfall of patients with highly infectious diseases.
Others visiting the same places are always at a risk of catching infections. So, if you can get consultation and even referrals for a mandatory hospital visit at home, it will reduce the chances of exposure to such diseases.
And eventually, its one less trouble to worry about.
Feature #6: Telemedicine has piqued the interest of doctors
Doctors constantly juggle their shifts with their private practice or special clinics. It is quite a troublesome part of their lives.
However, if even the doctor gets the luxury of sitting at home and examining his patients, it will definitely evolve the future of medical assistance.
That’s how telemedicine is becoming more popular amongst doctors as well. Many of them are already investing in marketing their online services to attract more patients.
What does the future look like?
The telemedicine market is already exploding. At the same time, it’s important to anticipate a shift from traditional healthcare delivery models. They should align with efforts to improve telemedicine platforms.
If everything goes as planned, teleconsultation can become the norm, and all patients will seek advice sitting at home before crowding hospitals.