Magazine Article | January 23, 2015

Telemedicine: The Next Big Thing In Health IT

Source: Health IT Outcomes
ken congdon

By Ken Congdon

The most promising aspect of telemedicine is the impact the technology can have on population health and patient care.

The cover story for this issue, “Moving Beyond The EHR,” takes a close look at the technology initiatives that are likely to gain favor with healthcare providers in the “post- EHR era.” The EHR-savvy providers interviewed for the article share a number of projects they have earmarked as their next priority — everything from population health management to price transparency. These initiatives will definitely be key focus areas for many providers, but in my opinion, telemedicine is poised to be the “next big thing” in health IT.

There are several reasons I feel this way. First, many of the cost barriers traditionally associated with telemedicine are starting to disappear. For example, Medicare and Medicaid are beginning to cover remote consultations with physicians, and independent insurers are beginning to follow suit. Suddenly, telemedicine reimbursement is becoming more mainstream.