Everything is shifting online, becoming fast-paced, quick, and easily accessible, but here’s a real question: Did you ever thought one day you will receive top-notch healthcare services through a virtual window that’s in your pocket?
We never did.
When different health centers had to close their doors in unprecedented times, the Internet was the only way telehealth could open its doors for the patients. From urgent care for your grandma to daily checkups for your first child — people are more likely to engage from the comfort of their homes.
According to Healthcare IT News, 50 million people are ready to switch their family practice provider to video visits. This clearly shows people love the convenience and time-saving even in health.
Telehealth is a one-stop-shop solution for a wide range of healthcare services that is convenient and time-saving. So, here we are, sharing all about Telehealth within this quick guide.
What is Telehealth?
In simple words, Telehealth is a process used in health care services where a patient can access a wide range of healthcare facilities, doctor visits, and other regular checkups remotely or from the convenience of their home. This hassle-free method makes the process smoother for you and your loved one’s health problems.
This idea of virtual health service has come a long way, though. It all started with home and community-based care centers. As per Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) forecasts, the national health spending will grow at a rate of 5.5% per year in 2027.
Previously, only a few people had the access to the best health care service but due to the new online home “Internet,” everyone owns a lifesaver.
The advancement in telecommunications and digital communication technologies has helped us overcome the disparities in healthcare industries.
You might think what’s the purpose behind introducing Telehealth? The aim is to overcome all the barriers and provide equal healthcare access to everyone. As a face-to-face consultation method, it supports clinical health care and provides expert health-related guidance to patients.
Benefits of Telehealth App Development
There’s no doubt that everyone is witnessing the growth of the Telehealth industry. Don’t believe us, just see the stats.
The global telehealth market was valued at $2.78 billion in 2016. Now, as per Markets and Markets, it’s predicted to reach $9.35 billion by 2021, increasing at a compound annual rate of 27.5%.
So, if you are someone who wants to jump on the Telehealth bandwagon, now is the time. Needless to say, the after-effects of this industry is going to be huge but before going too far, let’s talk about the types of Telehealth everyone should know:
- Remote Patient Monitoring:
Also known as self-monitoring or testing process; it is mainly used for senior people checkups and people living in remote areas. You are under the supervision of doctors and healthcare teams remotely, through virtual screens. This technology includes collecting and uploading patient’s data through telehealth app development, devices to transmit heart rates, blood glucose, and sleep patterns, and home monitoring services for elder people suffering from dementia or other diseases.
Having a pair of eyes will make things easier for you.
- Mobile Health:
Mobile health uses smartphones, tablets, or other health-based software as a tool for health practices and personal support. It’s done through digital assistance and wireless infrastructure. It monitors patient’s daily actions and promotes a healthy lifestyle, boosting their overall health.
- Asynchronous Video (AKA Store-and-Forward):
It’s a real-time process where the patient’s history and the entire information are gathered through an online-based audio-video consultation call — store-and-forward also known as asynchronous video. After collecting all the information, the data is then sent through a secured email and analyzed. This is often done by a cloud messaging system. Furthermore, patients’ treatments are planned as per this real-time data.
- Live Video-Conferencing:
As the name suggests, it’s all about the live video sessions. This is a new model where two-way communication is held between the doctor/ providers and the patients.
It is the most effective type of Telehealth service because of the accessibility, easy-to-use method, and efficacy on emergency occasions — this method works like a holy grail. It saves time both for patients and the practitioner, reduces stress, and improves treatments through clear and concise communication.
There are endless benefits of Telehealth but we will focus on the crucial ones, both for patients and providers:
- Expanding access to the healthcare industry
- Improved clinical workflow by removing all the barriers
- Advanced safety for patients who are extremely ill to travel or have mobility constraints
- Flexibility for patients as they can schedule therapy at their own preferred time
- Cost-effective therapy both for the patients and the doctors
- More inclusive in terms of patient self-management at home and monitoring care and results
- Capitalization of technology by capturing, storing, analyzing, and leveraging data
- Supports communication along with consistent patient care
Difference between Telehealth & Telemedicine
People often integrate these two terms Telehealth and Telemedicine due to their terminology. Although, these two are distinct terms; Telehealth is all about the broader view of technologies, systems, and services provided to the patients as a complete entity or system.
Whereas, Telemedicine (the practice of medicine) is a subset of Telehealth that refers to the provision of health care services rendered to patients remotely.
Here’s how they both differ:
All Telehealth is not Telemedicine while all Telemedicine can come under Telehealth. This means both are a member of a broader effort but one delivers the health information, education to consumers and handles a large part of e-health. While the other is given a single task to handle health care services through a remote distance using electronic communications and digital features. Organizing follows up, video calls, etc. are part of Telemedicine.
Telehealth App Development Trends
The post covid times has drastically changed the way the Telehealth industry works. Mckinsey and company noted a surge during Covid-19 where the consumer shift happened from 11% use of Telehealth in 2019 to 76%.
Now that’s some notable numbers!
The bar is rising day by day for healthcare industries, and it’s beneficial to know the worth of telehealth app development to detect the reason behind these whopping numbers:
- Teleradiology: Access to digital imaging has made things easier for many Telehealth specialists and mainly radiologists. It allows medical images to be transmitted via electronic devices for better healthcare access, delivery, and standards.
- Telesurgery/Remote Robotic Surgery: The invention of robotic surgery enabled surgeons to participate in surgeries without physically being present. With the quality audio, video, and visuals, the probability of negative outcomes is reduced to null.
- Telehealth Nursing: It is also known as Telenursing where the nurse is responsible for assembling data, analyzing outcomes, identifying safety issues, and managing the standard of treatments. Also reviewing the study of robotic devices, cleaning up and setting up each surgical procedure from start to finish remotely.
- Telehealth Physical Therapy: Yes, it enables physical therapists (physiotherapists) to deliver remote care and guidance to their patients.
- Telepsychiatry: Famously known as Telehealth mental health therapy which often involves a direct conversation between the psychiatrists and patient through a virtual window. It’s done through online texting, video calls, and messages.
- Teleconsultations: As previously mentioned, having satisfied patients that are on another side of our phone screens is paramount. These consultation calls are done through video conferencing, phone calls, nursing call centers, text messaging, and secured e-mails — the way it fits in the patient’s schedule.
How to Optimize Your Telehealth Strategy to Shape this Opportunity?
If you’re someone who wants to zoom in a little bit and understand how you can build and sustain a Telehealth program, here are few things to keep in mind:
- Optimizing infrastructure, training, and value-based incentivizing for access to chronic healths and introducing different payment models.
- Security considerations in terms of VPNs, authentication and endpoint protection, and management — everything to make sure your patient’s data is in safe hands.
- Integrating virtual health to reinforce technology and build up to form the ground. This means taking ownership of different delivery assets, value-based contracts and measuring the value of virtual care by clinical outcomes.
- Achieve all your business outcomes by a most solid infrastructure, integration of clinical and business applications like labs integration for a smooth patient’s experience.
Develop A Powerful Telehealth App with Quytech
In a nutshell, technology has the power and potential to improve the quality of healthcare services in near future. Telehealth is providing opportunities and bringing people closer in a coordinated and more systematic way. Are you prepped up to embrace the change? If so, diving into healthcare app development would be a good idea. The experts at Quytech, a leading mobile app development company, can help you. Get connected!