While all projections lead to considerable growth in the telehealth market, physicians appear reluctant to implement virtual care into their practices.
Telehealth advocates and healthcare providers credit the technology for helping to provide much needed services to people living in areas affected by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma.
Instead of going to the ER, BCBS advises them to use an urgent care clinic—if there is one within 15 miles of their home—or use BCBSGa’s LiveHealth Online telehealth service. But critics of the policy note that laypersons aren’t trained to recognize emergencies on the spot, and that this presents another barrier to care.
Increased access to mental health care services via existing primary care physician options for problems such as PTSD or depression showed an improvement in mental health among military members, according to research from the RAND Corporation.
When it comes to the use of cutting edge technology in healthcare, examples are usually found in operating rooms or spaces designated for patient care. Telehealth technologies are helping to change that.