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3 Major Challenges Faced in Telehealth and How to Overcome Them

Telehealth or telemedicine is on the rise in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This practice has been utilized majorly for high-risked patients to keep their safety into consideration. 

Many healthcare professionals are finding ways to expand telehealth services as part of the Medicaid program and simplifying solutions for medical billing services. Moreover, healthcare leaders don’t expect this trend to reverse anytime soon, even after the situation gets better.

The Future of Telehealth

Telehealth is going to stay even post-pandemic as patients are more cautious about face-to-face visits. There is a chance of virus exposure in medical facilities, and government statistics suggest the same situation.

Statistically, an up to sixty percent decrease in in-house patients’ visits was observed in early April. The momentum is slowly picking up, but we have only recovered forty percent in this sector. Twenty percent when compared to the general ratio is still not mended.

Patients with chronic diseases need special attention, and they can require it at any time of day.

When the situation was worse, elective medical treatments were delayed, which resulted in an increased death toll. Therefore, denying the importance of telehealth is as stupid as anyone denying a possible threat only because it is not visible yet.

How Telehealth Works?

Telephone-based appointments, video conferences, and all other sources of modern means are utilized to offer services to patients sitting far away. While these sources are more likely to facilitate patients, the following issues also come in handy with telehealth services.

Access to Telehealth is a Problem in Many Areas

Our country is where more than a quarter of people sixty-five years or above don’t use the Internet. Moreover, up to twenty-one percent of people living in rural facilities don’t have access to the Internet. How can you advertise telehealth here? 

The majority of the population doesn’t know how to communicate via video conferencing. Moreover, many people don’t have access to a stable Internet connection.

High mobile data charges are another factor hindering the growth or acceptance of telehealth in the community. It reflects poorly on medical claims compiled by medical billing services.

Every case is different, but there is no all-inclusive solution up until now to address these issues simultaneously.

Now, what is the solution?

Telephone service is the best solution to combat the unavailability of the Internet. Every person has access to a cellphone. Even if they don’t own a cellphone, a phone of a family member or a neighbor is always available for them.

Text messaging is another easy communication medium. Instead of waiting for physicians to join in the video link or vice versa, telephonic conversations take lesser time and are comparatively easier.

Distractions Can Take Away the Essence of Quality Care

In-patient appointments are much more comfortable in most cases. On the contrary, online communication comes with distractions. For Instance, whether someone is bugging the communication, or kids need attention, or there is someone at the door. 

Such instances affect the quality of healthcare services. Moreover, physicians and medical billing services cannot digest information from distorted communication. It is not useful to create accurate and clean medical claims via medical billing companies.

Also, with too many distractions along the way, patients don’t understand the information properly.

So, what is the solution?

In such cases, to deliver quality healthcare to patients, physicians should have an easy plan of communication to avoid any inconvenience.

Lack of Coordination between Physicians & Patients

Patients, especially senior patients often have a close relative or friend to interpret the doctor’s information. So, during the telehealth session, patients do not have an “interpreter” with them. Thus, they fail to understand physicians’ requirements and suggestions and feel helpless.

Obviously, if a patient can’t understand what the doctor is saying, how can a doctor claim to provide quality healthcare in such a case? Therefore, having straightforward and friendly communication is important where things can be easily discussed. It also benefits medical billing services in the long run.

All stakeholders should be on the same page, and effective communication is the key to make it possible. Healthcare organizations and even medical billing companies should invest in enhancing their communication power. It will improve patients’ outcomes. Eventually, physicians’ revenue will increase.

So, what is the solution?

Documenting every telehealth session helps in catering to communication problems. Thus, a record provides streamlined physician-patient sessions. You get everything in written form, so you know about the implemented measures and the next plan of action. 

Conclusion

The pandemic has seriously turned the healthcare industry, and the care coordination system is no exception. However, technology is now at the forefront. With its effective use, we can cater to many challenges, provided all stakeholders learn and adapt the modern care delivery ways. The need is to educate everyone and equip them with the right tools for an empowered healthcare system.

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