The coronavirus pandemic has triggered a significant increase in healthcare providers extending telehealth services to individuals. Virtual consultations are being made available to minimize the number of individuals traveling to hospitals and clinics to restrict the propagation of the virus to make sure of patient safety. The growth in use is because of necessity, nevertheless, new research states that telehealth services are well-accepted by both providers and patients.
TigerConnect, a most broadly adopted communication platform provider in the healthcare sector, fairly recently performed an extensive Harris Poll survey to investigate attitudes towards telehealth amid patients and medical providers. The survey was carried out on 2,039 U.S. men and women aged 18 or older between July 23 and July 27, 2020 and 500 doctors between June and July 2020.
88% of healthcare professionals who were giving telehealth services before saw a rise in the number of individuals availing telehealth services as a consequence of the coronavirus outbreak, with 71% of providers stating there was a huge growth in usage. It is clear why numerous providers and patients have accepted telehealth to be able to help reduce infection risk and avert spreading the virus. However, once the pandemic is over, it is very likely that telehealth services will continue to be used at the same or perhaps at a higher level, that is according to about 71% of providers.
Patients additionally give good support for telehealth services. 87% of persons who tried using telehealth mentioned they were happy with the experience. 7 of 10 patients expressing it is crucial for physicians to deliver telehealth visits to their patients. Numerous patients seem to like virtual appointments to in-person appointments. Merely 40% of patients stated they want to meet their physicians personally.
Patients may well be concerned about getting telehealth services, however, once they have their very first virtual session they are happy to go virtual once more. Patients who had one telehealth or video meeting in the last year were doubly likely to exhibit a strong inclination for a virtual meeting over a personal visit.
When patients were questioned if there was anything concerning telehealth that they didn’t like, nearly half of patients could hardly think of a single complaint concerning their experience. 52% of patients mentioned they feel telehealth was a safer substitute for personal hospital visits. The patients brought up the following principal merits of telehealth services:
- convenience (50%)
- continuing with sessions that may usually have been postponed (36%)
- the ease of scheduling health check-ups (34%)
Gen Z (Under 24s) and Boomers (Over 55s) were the age categories that were least happy with telehealth. The frequent issue among Boomers was it was very complex, whilst the frequent criticism with Gen Z people was the deficiency of features, exhibiting there is evidently other stuff for improvement.
The survey on doctors revealed there is a very fragmented sector, with 140 various telehealth solutions utilized. 14% of survey participants claimed they are at the moment employing several telehealth solutions. That could change when the pandemic is over and the HHS’ OCR’s notice of enforcement discretion expires. The notice of enforcement discretion for telehealth services in the short term granted the use of telehealth solutions that may not be completely compliant with HIPAA requirements.
65% of respondents mentioned they were satisfied with their ongoing telehealth solutions and more or less 90% of TigerConnect platform users reported they were happy with the TigerConnect platform.
The survey furthermore showed there is solid bipartisan support for telehealth solutions. 66% of Republicans and 77% of Democrats believe healthcare providers must give telehealth services to patients. There remain some issues to triumph over to make certain that telehealth services are offered to all. 53% of surveyed patients located in urban zones had employed telehealth services in comparison to merely 31% of patients in rural zones, which usually means there may be concerns with broadband access and cellular reception in rural locations which is constraining uptake.
According to TigerConnect CEO Brad Brooks, telehealth is here to stay. This research points out that the habits of millions of US citizens have been altered and now easily access great healthcare as readily as catching a taxi ride to the airport. The industry needs to seize this instant and be sure that anyone can easily access world-class healthcare wherever and whenever to improve health benefits for all Americans.
The information of the survey will be reviewed in a new webinar on Thursday, November 12, 2020. Go to this page for more details.