What are the benefits and drawbacks of telemedicine?

Posted On: May 26, 2022

Posted By: AppsRhino

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Introduction

Are you a healthcare provider who is losing work opportunities? Do you see other medical practitioners around you gaining patients and flourishing? You know the reason behind this occurrence- the lack of Telemedicine in your medical institute.

Telemedicine is the new way of providing healthcare facilities to patients. Although it is not a new concept (it has been here for years now), it witnessed a surge in popularity and usage during the pandemic's peak. The first quarter of 2020 in the U.S. saw a 154% surge in telehealth visits.

What felt like a temporary arrangement for seeking treatments has become the new normal and is the most preferred means for people to get treated. Now that the consumer preference has changed, it is understandable for medical institutes and healthcare providers to switch to Telemedicine.

But incorporating Telemedicine is not that affordable. The cost of required equipment and paraphernalia is hefty; thus, adopting Telemedicine into your current system is something to consider carefully.

Therefore, to help you make a sound decision, we have compiled a few Telemedicine pros and cons. So, stick around to know how Telemedicine can help you and what downsides Telemedicine has.

Summary

Adopting Telemedicine into your system seems to be a lucrative avenue, but you should know what downsides it has. Although people like convenience nowadays, they will not spend money on something convenient that might pose a problem in the future. Therefore, it is of utmost importance to know both the pros and cons of Telemedicine. Have a look at the pros and cons of Telemedicine for patients and healthcare providers.

Telemedicine Pros:

  1. Lower Costs
  2. Improved Healthcare Access
  3. Preventive Care
  4. Convenience
  5. Slows Down The Spread Of Infection
  6. Reduced Overhead Expenses
  7. Additional revenue stream
  8. Less Exposure To Illness and Infections for Healthcare Providers
  9. Patient satisfaction

Telemedicine Cons

  1. Insurance coverage
  2. Protecting medical data
  3. Care delays
  4. Licensing issues
  5. Technological concerns
  6. An inability to examine patients

Telemedicine Pros

Here we list a few Telemedicine pros for patients and doctors. Healthcare professionals need to know that if patients perceive benefits in using Telemedicine, then only they will spend their money on it and come to your hospital. Thus, it is crucial to ensure that you provide them with the benefits of using Telemedicine, which increases the number of patients coming to you.

Telemedicine pros 1: Lower Costs

Patients prefer and use Telemedicine as it lets them spend less on bills which means they would love to get treated by a healthcare professional who offers Telemedicine. According to Cisco global's recent findings, 74% of patients like easy access to healthcare services, that is Telemedicine. Moreover, Telemedicine means patients are no longer needed to commute to the hospital for a consultation. It reduces their secondary expenses like money spent on petrol/ diesel, hiring a nanny to look after the kids, etc.

Telemedicine pros 2: Improved Healthcare Access

Not everyone in this world is mobile. Some people can not travel due to various reasons. Some reasons are as follows:

  1. They have disabilities.
  2. They are old.
  3. They live in a geographically isolated area. (In the U.S., for every 100,000 rural patients, only 43 healthcare providers are available.)
  4. They have an illness that has them bedridden. Whatever their inability is, Telemedicine allows them to get quality treatment nonetheless. Anyone can contact doctors and get treated via Telemedicine, thus, improving access to healthcare.

Telemedicine pros 3: Preventive Care

Telemedicine provides preventive care to people who can not visit hospitals due to financial or geographic barriers. Preventive care helps combat their current issues and improves their long-term health.

Telemedicine pros 4: Convenience

Another upside of Telemedicine for patients is convenience. This perk of Telemedicine lets them get treated without taking off of work, hiring a babysitter for their kids, etc. In short, busy people (in general anyone) can access healthcare from the comforts of their house without physically exerting themselves.

Telemedicine pros 5: Slows Down The Spread Of Infection

Hospitals are a place where one finds all types of patients. Some might grapple with contagious diseases, and some battle with non-contagious ones. This fact means that people with underlying conditions or weak immune systems are prone to infections at such places. Telemedicine allows this section of people to get medical assistance without any need to be physically present in the hospital.

Telemedicine pros 6: Reduced Overhead Expenses

This perk of Telemedicine is for healthcare providers. Using Telemedicine means you can afford a hospital with fewer exam rooms. Moreover, you also do not need to pay for front desk support. Thus, Telemedicine helps you incur fewer overhead expenses.

Telemedicine pros 7: Additional revenue stream

Medical institutes have realized that Telemedicine has supplemented their incomes. The reason for it is that Telemedicine enables doctors to treat more patients than they did through traditional practices.

Telemedicine pros 8: Less Exposure To Illness and Infections for Healthcare Providers

Telemedicine ensures the safety of doctors. With fewer patients visiting and an increase in remote treatment cases, doctors are not prone to contracting diseases and falling ill.

Telemedicine pros 9: Patient satisfaction

From less to no waiting time has surged the patient's satisfaction level. When more patients are satisfied with their healthcare providers, medical practitioners will likely see them returning to their institute to get treated. A new study reveals that telemedicine patients score lower for depression, anxiety, and stress. They also have 38% fewer hospital admissions.

Telemedicine Cons

Here we list a few Telemedicine cons for patients and doctors. Healthcare professionals need to know that if patients perceive that it is not beneficial for them to use Telemedicine, they hesitate to spend their money on it. Thus, it is crucial to ensure that you provide them with the benefits of using Telemedicine and mitigate the downsides of Telemedicine for them.

Telemedicine Cons 1: Insurance coverage

The downside to Telemedicine is that not every insurer covers Telemedicine. Currently, merely 26 percent of insurers reimburse the costs of Telemedicine. Therefore, it requires you to research the reimbursement policy landscape in your state before you implement it. The laws regarding it are ever-changing, so calculate all your risks and profits before diving into Telemedicine.

Telemedicine Cons 2: Protecting medical data

Security is the biggest concern on the Web, and Telemedicine is no exception. Your patient's data and security are always at risk. Hackers and other cyber offenders are always on their toes to steal people's crucial data. Therefore, a hacker can get his hands on a patient's medical data. The chances for it to happen are manifold when patients access Telemedicine on a public network or via an unencrypted channel.

Telemedicine Cons 3: Care delays

Even though remote monitoring helps doctors give first aid to patients, every patient is different. Some patients require urgent care that is not possible through Telemedicine. There are instances when going for Telemedicine first delays treatment. These instances include emergency cases where doctors can not treat a severely injured person remotely and must be present near that patient.

Telemedicine Cons 4: Licensing issues

Everyone knows that state laws vary, and a healthcare provider can not go against them. Therefore, you might not be able to practice medicine if your state laws do not permit Telemedicine incorporation. The state from which your patient comes also plays a pivotal role here.

Telemedicine Cons 5: Technological concerns

Another downside to Telemedicine is technological concerns. It can be challenging for you to decide on the right platform to provide Telemedicine services for patients. Another factor to consider is your internet connectivity. A poor internet connection can hamper the quality of care you offer to your patients. The last thing that might come under Technological Concerns is Security. You need to ensure that your system is entirely secure and compliant with the required privacy laws.

Telemedicine Cons 6: An inability to examine patients

In Telemedicine, you are entirely dependent on the information that you get from your patients. It means your patients will present to you with self-reports during Telemedicine sessions. It will be better to ask your patients tons of questions to gain insight into their medical history to avoid misdiagnosis. But there are instances when patients miss out on a crucial piece of information that would have been noticeable during an in-person visit. Such mistakes might lead to improper diagnosis and treatment, thus, tarnishing your image.

Conclusion

Having a Telemedicine app is the need of the hour. People like using Telemedicine apps as they let people have more control over their treatment and be completely aware of what is happening to them.

You can gain many patients if you present to them the comforts they will get once they start using your services.

However, there is always a chance of misdiagnosis as nothing beats in-person visits and treatment. Therefore, it will be better to train your staff and patients on using Telemedicine and gain advantages.

Thus, to ensure a safe environment for treatment, your Telemedicine app should follow all your state's laws, regulations, and policies. Moreover, it should display only accurate data and facts. It is a very delicate task that only a thorough professional can execute. You can find a competent professional in the developers at AppsRhino who will ensure your app complies with all the policies and is the best. Contact Us Today for more information.