Your watch can now alert the physician when you fall sick and need quick access to care. And if there is irregularity in your heart rhythms, wearable can detect that and alert a Telehealth provider. Telehealth, well supported by automated detection, has emerged as the most modern as well as a convenient healthcare experience, transformed access to care and improved patient outcomes.
The result of America Well's 2019 Physician Survey confirms the surge of Telehealth services - Physician Telehealth adoption has gone up by 340% and by the year 2022, the survey says that somewhere in the range of 340,000 to 590,000 physicians are expected to be a part of the Telehealth orbit. In an ecosystem that brings the Patient, Payer and the Provider together, what's in it for the Patient, Payer and the Provider?
Telehealth value for Providers
Providers have found the Telehealth access, through video visits, a transforming tool to break the time-and-distance barrier and facilitate quick access to care. In being a patient-centric care option, Telehealth has allowed the providers to increase their roster of new patients, work remotely but offer top quality care and reduce readmission penalties. Telehealth has also empowered providers to facilitate consistent and timely access to care and improve patient outcomes.
Telehealth success story of BayCare Health System is a case in point. Through the virtual wound care program, the leading healthcare system brought about 85% reduction in waiting times and has significantly increased patient visits in a week by about 500%. More importantly, Telehealth has opened up opportunities to use real-time health data to augment physician decision-making
Payer health in Telehealth
Telehealth is now a tool for the payers to differentiate from competition, where health plan options with remote care draws patient attention with innovation and convenience as strongpoints. Health plans with Telehealth options elevate a payer’s position in winning customer satisfaction and in being recognized as a user-friendly payer. Set to cash in on Medicare Advantage plans, health insurers also make the most of the surge in participation and enrolment, with Telehealth now becoming a part of Medicare Advantage plans.
When MVP Health Care allowed members to gain physician access through mobile devices, it witnessed an increase in mobile-supported virtual care among its beneficiaries, which helped this payer score high on the customer satisfaction scale. Bringing down costs, as in the case reducing cost structures for high-risk patients when telemedicine is used, is another payer gain out of Telehealth as it also help payers improve quality scores.
Telehealth is also a potent weapon for Payers to enhance members’ satisfaction and win loyal members. Take the case of a red-flag symptom. Through Telehealth, a physician is able to monitor a patient at regular intervals and identify red-flag symptoms early which only augments the model of care – bringing benefits to both the patient and the payer.
Patient gains from Telehealth
For patients, it is the faster and easier access to providers and specialists that work to their advantage. Remote monitoring, made possible through Telehealth, serves well in promoting timely monitoring and consultation to manage patients’ health conditions, reduce unnecessary admissions as well as readmissions.
By allowing physicians to quickly prioritize care delivery and use real-time patient data to enhance medical decision-making, Telehealth has benefited patients by way of improved clinical workflows and practice efficiency.
The way Telehealth has transformed care delivery is better illustrated by a cohort study conducted around member participation in AbilTo’s Cardiac Health Program. The results from the study revealed that hospital admissions had been cut by 38%, readmissions by 31%. Patients have found Telehealth an able ally to eliminate wait-time, gain quick access to care and enjoy better health.
For the 'What's in it for me' query for Patients, Providers and Payers, answer lie in the far-reaching scope of Telehealth and the benefits that it continues to shower upon the healthcare landscape.
In short, telehealth will save approximately 100 minutes of in-patient doctor visit time which corresponds to $38 per visit*.
* Based on America Well data from Amwell.