From virtual office visits to remote patient monitoring, telehealth services provide consumers easy access to convenient and efficient healthcare services. They especially benefit patients who don’t feel well enough to travel to a doctor’s office or find themselves sick over the weekend when offices are closed.
Instead of leaving their home, during a virtual office visit, they can interact with a licensed physician through an e-mail or Web-based portal. Virtual office visits offer patients another way to communicate with their doctors about many health issues that do not require face-to-face contact. Doctors are able to address conditions from simple urinary tract infections, cold and flu symptoms, and upper respiratory infections to routine follow-ups of chronic diseases, allergies or rashes.
Benefits of Virtual Visits
But the wide range of symptoms doctors are able to treat isn’t the only reason someone would benefit from scheduling a virtual visit. Patients can schedule a doctor visit when they’re short on time and usually get an appointment in 10 to 15 minutes. Other advantages include being able to have prescriptions sent directly to your pharmacy and having access to board-certified doctors no matter what day of the week it is and no matter what time it is, even very early morning or late at night.
When patients connect with a doctor using a smartphone, tablet or computer, they often can have a diagnosis, treatment plan and prescription sent to their pharmacy of choice in less than 30 minutes.
Although laws in some states sometimes slowed the growth of telehealth services in the past, many state governments now are passing laws encouraging the adoption of virtual services.
Consumer experience with virtual consultations seems largely positive, according to a recent survey by J.D. Power. The survey of nearly 8,300 consumers found that 85 percent of virtual visit users were able to resolve their medical issue by using the convenient service.
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