I think there's going to be a lot of perpetuating momentum.
[Together, we can find our way forward – The emergence of telehealth]
People were forced into using it when they couldn't get access into the health system.
[Dr. Richard Migliori – Executive Vice President, Medical Affairs, and Chief Medical Officer, UnitedHealth Group]
Because things were crowded with COVID or they feared being exposed to COVID. They resorted to this type of technology. So, I think there's got to be some interest.
It was just like when they introduced the electronic kiosk in the lobbies of airports, and then all of a sudden people got used to it because they had to, and then all of a sudden, they started going online. And now they do it from their app. Well, those kinds of incremental changes, I think, is what lies ahead for telehealth. But other things to sustain it, is always giving somebody value.
First value is being there when they need you – access. One of the things that telehealth does that no other part of medicine can do is to be there conveniently when you feel it, that when the patient feels they need it.
The second thing is the affordability, benefit plans that keep that as an affordable option will perpetuate it.
The other thing that people don't think about is what you do on the other end, is getting the physician engaged. We're seeing a dramatic increase in physicians who are in practice treating these patients now resorting themselves to telemedicine to engage their patient base. And a patient is far more attracted to telemedicine we know when it's their own doctor that they're going to see, rather than some stranger.
The final thing is, is the way in which we keep doctors engaged so that patients stay engaged, is paying doctors on a value-based contract. In other words, prepaid health care – where physicians work to provide high-quality care at a lower cost. One of the lowest-cost ways of seeing a patient is to have that telephone engagement or the video engagement which allows the physician to better triage.
[Together, we can find our way forward.]
The information contained herein is not medical or clinical advice, nor is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Commentary is for general informational purposes only.
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