The pandemic created the need for providers of all sizes in all specialties to pivot to a virtual care offering. As the pandemic slides into the rearview mirror, the future of these telehealth solutions is an obvious question. Was it a temporary fix for an unprecedented crisis or can we take what we learned and benefit from it in the long term?
Two recent articles point to the latter, touching on the lasting benefits of telehealth in specific use cases post-pandemic. Forbes magazine details the ways in which virtual care has been a positive for patients suffering from chronic diseases as well as mental health issues.
“The use cases for telehealth indicate that a large percentage of telehealth is related to preventative care and routine medical management, especially for chronic conditions. This is a blessing for patients who are unable to travel for in-person routine visits, especially older populations or those who lack personal transportation. New use cases may hold more promise for telehealth. One example is behavioral health, as amply borne out by the breakneck pace of funding for digital mental health startups. Digital startups representing mental healthcare raised over $5 billion in 2021, nearly double the amount raised in 2020, and representing one-sixth of the total funding for digital health.”
Research conducted at the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in conjunction with Blue Health Intelligence and the Digital Medicine Society echoed the findings above. The study notes that the majority of patients with chronic conditions did not need a follow-up encounter after an initial telehealth encounter.
One Forbes quote sums up the future of telehealth and remains the guiding principle behind our product development at Get Real Health.
“The need for telehealth to go beyond simply replicating the in-person experience and move toward reimagining the health care experience.”
The goals of this statement will take work from policymakers to enact legislation addressing reimbursements, access, and interoperability. In the meantime, it confirms that our Digital Front Door technology is on the right path, addressing many of these challenges today with more advances on the horizon.
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