An article this week from Dr. Bob Kocher, a physician and member of California’s coronavirus task force, notes that demand for telemedicine is booming and is likely to become the norm even after the current crisis has passed.
According to Kocher, patients will continue to seek out telehealth options where possible, eventually coming to prefer that option when available. At the same time, Medicare as well as many private insurance companies are making it easier for doctors and patients to engage in virtual care. Countries around the world are doing the same.
Telemedicine offers benefits to both doctors and patients alike. For patients, it means the convenience of staying at home and not taking the risk of contracting the virus by traveling to a doctor’s office. For doctors, one of the surprising benefits is being able to observe the previously unseen living conditions of a patient. Doctors can be on the lookout for conditions that may be exacerbating a certain medical condition, factors which would not be observable as part of a traditional office visit. As telehealth continues to advance, connected devices will be able to provide even more information to providers.
Telemedicine also lowers costs for both insurance companies and doctors, the former saving money on emergency room visits and the latter on traditional office overhead.
Kocher believes that for all the current chaos, the one positive that may emerge from this crisis is that the benefits of telehealth will be here to stay.
Check out the full article here: