As mobile technology sweeps across every industry, healthcare included, it brings with it a window of new opportunity - the ability to expand access, and place patient experiences and satisfaction in the center of their care, while helping to reduce cost.
By 2030, it is expected that 1 in every 5 people will be 65 years of age or older. Medical institutions and providers will have to find new approaches to increase efficiency in order to meet the needs of the aging population, aiming to age in place. Telehealth is one of the most prominent examples of technology helping healthcare providers meet the evolving demands caused by the growth of at-home care and patient involvement in personal health.
Telehealth aids in the transition of hospital-centered care to other settings such as outpatient, nursing homes and in-home care, making care and support more accessible for patients with physical and transportation limitations. Providers are able to remotely engage with patients in care-related conversations and monitor physical and emotional well-being and their healing process, improving the quality of care.
Home health organizations are able to provide their caregivers and patients with greater support while in the field. Caregivers are able to quickly consult with essential and knowledgable primary providers and specialists who are part of the patient's care team, to aid in developing fast and expert care solutions and reducing the time of diagnosis.
Institutions are able to save time and increase efficiency for both themselves and their patients. At times many concerns don’t always warrant an in-person appointment that can cause stress for patients, and so by at-home caregivers utilizing telehealth tools, time and resources used towards in-office visits can be reallocated. Because providers are able to monitor patients who are self-managing their high-risk or chronic conditions at home, readmissions and unneeded admissions can be reduced or avoided.
Organizations like the Community Visiting Nurse Association in New Jersey, have seen much success through the adoption of telehealth when treating patients with Congestive Heart Failure(CHF) and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Last quarter, patients on the association's telehealth program had a 30-day readmission rate of 7.89%, less than half of the state's average readmission rate of 16.9%, while the national average is 16.7%.
Organizations are also able to use telehealth for internal use. Administrators can use video conferences to host trainings or meetings with multiple caregivers, allowing remote employees to tune in while in the field. These video sessions can also help foster inclusiveness and community within an organization through enabling real-time, face-to-face interactions, giving each name a face.
With the constantly evolving medical landscape and associated challenges, the healthcare industry must improve employee and patient experiences to meet their needs. Telehealth addresses current issues we face as well as solves predicted issues we likely will see in the near future. This new channel of care improves experiences for patients by delivering quality care a possibility where it wouldn’t be otherwise, while also helping to better manage the cost of healthcare.
Lua is an all-in-one HIPAA compliant communication solution, enabling providers and patients to keep in contact via secure messaging, calling and video chat. Contact us to request a free trial and learn more about Lua's Telehealth feature.