Telehealth is a facility where doctors provide online consultations and healthcare through their phone, laptop, or other digital devices to patients. Accessing telehealth reduces the costs of travel and saves time while enabling access to quality healthcare from registered and certified healthcare personnel. Today, when COVID-19 is a constant threat to our health and wellbeing, telehealth has achieved renewed significance for patients and doctors.
Telehealth is also extremely useful for people in rural areas, who often need to travel overnight to reach specialist doctors or hospitals. Patients often skip treatment because of the burden of excessive travel. Telehealth offers an effective answer to this challenge. Patients can consult a doctor at the touch of their phone screen. With data now cheap and readily available even in remote areas, telehealth is fast becoming a potential alternative in healthcare delivery.
With advancement of digital technologies, telehealth is fast becoming a well established reality. The concept of virtual healthcare is not new though. For decades telemedicine has been used from primary healthcare to radiology, cardiology to orthopaedics.
But in recent times, telehealth applications are being offered primarily as software-as-a-service (SaaS) that typically require monthly subscription packages. These platforms are both highly secure and increasingly affordable by everyone. Industry experts predict that telehealth will soon prove to be a game changer in the healthcare domain.
Here is a list of 7 benefits of telehealth applications for both patients and doctors –
1. Offers new and convenient models
Many people do not have doctors they can call when in need. Several telehealth platforms offer 24*7 access to specialists any time without an appointment. The advancement of telehealth platforms is causing a paradigm shift in the healthcare industry by transitioning to a consumer-centric model. These platforms enable medical practitioners to launch their own platform. And by offering flexible hours and new and easy models for patients, they allows them to expand their patient base outside the clinic or hospital facilities.
Telehealth platforms also offer convenient monitoring tools for doctors to keep tabs on their patients’ progress. These tools will help doctors determine if a patient’s health is worsening or if they are developing new symptoms that need to be checked.
2. Improves patient engagement
Telehealth is innovating new ways of interaction between doctors and their patients which facilitates self-care. Healthcare professionals often need to guide patients about ways of taking care of themselves between appointments. Moreover, with the rise in chronic health conditions, telehealth allows clinicians to provide improved care at low cost. With telehealth, patient metrics can be reported from the comfort of their home, while medical teams act remotely in guiding patients in the journey toward health. This is particularly beneficial for people with phobias like agoraphobia (fear of crowded places or of leaving one’s home) which often prevent them from seeking care.
3. Expands access to care and reaches more patients
It is a fact that there is a rising shortage of doctors. Telehealth can address this gap by stretching the provider networks and enhance access to healthcare. Telehealth platforms can also reach patients living in rural regions, often many miles from the nearest medical facility. This is particularly beneficial for people living in remote and hilly regions as it allows people to avoid travelling on roads with poor driving conditions.
These networks can also be used for midlevel practitioners or community workers upskilling, thus reaching a wide array of people in innovative ways. Besides, telehealth has also enabled therapeutic care for those afflicted with stress, anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues including those who are at risk for self-harm or are coping with issues like bereavement or infertility.
4. Low cost
Doctors and therapists are expensive for many. Telemedicine services generally cost much less than in-person visits. This in turn trims down out-of-pocket costs and removes a big barrier to healthcare. On the other hand for doctors, telehealth lower office costs.
5. Reduced exposure to pathogens
With the COVID-19 virus still a concern, most want to avoid the hours-long wait at hospitals and clinics along with other patients. For them telehealth is an extremely effective solution as it enables them to stay at home and avoid exposure to infection and germs. This reduces the load on doctors as well.
6. Improves healthcare quality
Telehealth also improves healthcare quality as technology can perk up service delivery and timely treatment can mitigate problems becoming severe. It also eliminates unnecessary Emergency Room visits.
7. Improves patient satisfaction
Pateints who use telemedicine platforms typically report high levels of satisfaction. Surveys conducted in recent times reveal nearly 99% satisfaction score with telehealth among patients.
DocGenie is an online telemedicine platform that provides you with quality healthcare from the comfort of your own space. On DocGenie, you will find a select few, highly-qualified doctors, unlike other online platforms with thousands of doctors. So you can be assured of receiving excellent, honest, personalized care from the best doctors.
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