Fueled by technology advances and consumer demand, telemedicine is one of today’s top healthcare trends.
Telemedicine uses technology to facilitate communication between doctors and patients who are not in the same physical location regarding the evaluation, diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. This service offers increased access to doctors, especially for patients in rural areas, as well as easier access to specialists, such as mental health professionals.
However, it is not meant to be a complete replacement for in-person healthcare. Navigating whether a condition would be best treated by a face-to-face or a virtual visit is one challenge consumers face.
Other concerns, according to a Harris poll, include lack of insurance coverage (43% cited this as a top concern) as well as patients’ fears about losing their personal relationships with their healthcare providers (35%).
As employers, insurers, service providers and regulators work to resolve the challenges posed by telemedicine, and as consumer demand for teleservices grows, telemedicine will remain a popular industry topic.
For help assessing telemedicine and other benefit-related services for your organization, contact your local Hylant representative.