By David Thompson, MD, CHC, FACEP, CEO and chief medical officer, Health Navigator
In a time when consumers are getting much of their information on-demand, they are also starting to expect more convenience from healthcare. For example, most patients report the desire to contact their doctor through email or virtual visits. In short, telemedicine provides the convenient, time-saving access to health care that consumers want.
Telehealth also offers significant benefits to healthcare professionals. Consider the following ways telehealth technology can give your organization a boost:
Access to care can also impact patient satisfaction and retention.
e-Health technologies can use natural language processing that takes free-text consumer input and translates it into medical terminology. This process codes the patient text for chief complaint, acuity, SNOMED and ICD10 codes, and more. The structured data can then be used by a telehealth platform to automatically place patient cases in rank order, based on the severity of the individual’s chief complaints. This, in turn, provides the fastest, most efficient encounter for each patient.
Source: Health Navigator
Technology Solutions For Changing Needs
Telehealth technology won’t solve all health care issues, but it can be an effective tool that health care organizations should consider for their changing patient and business needs. As a matter of fact, telehealth is increasingly being promoted by employer-sponsored benefit plans and major health plans as a covered clinical service. Telehealth technology has the added benefit of helping providers do more with limited resources, provide consistent diagnostic experiences, and improve quality of care while reducing costs.
As health care continues to evolve and as consumers become increasingly engaged in their day-to-day health and the care they receive, telehealth will continue to be an answer to patient and provider needs. Innovations in care delivery, health care consumerism, changing regulatory standards, and technological capabilities will fuel further growth. Be sure to keep up with the latest trends and ask yourself: Would using telehealth technology help deliver a better experience for your customers and patients, while improving outcomes and financial performance?
About The Author
David Thompson, MD, CHC, FACEP is CEO and chief medical officer at Health Navigator. A part-time faculty attending in the Northwestern Memorial Hospital Emergency Department, Dr. Thompson also serves as chief medical information officer for ECI Healthcare Partners, and works as an author and partner with Self Care Decision, LLC and Schmitt-Thompson Clinical Content, LLC. In a collaboration with well-known pediatrician Dr. Barton Schmitt, Dr. Thompson has developed a comprehensive set of telephone triage protocols that are used in medical call centers and doctors’ offices in the United States and internationally. He is board-certified in both internal medicine and emergency medicine, having completed a dual residency at Northwestern Memorial Hospital at Northwestern University. Dr. Thompson is certified in health care compliance and is a Fellow in the American College of Emergency Physicians. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.