The flipside is that telehealth has limitations that in-person care does not. For instance, lab work appointments require the person to come into the facility, and in some cases, doctors cannot properly diagnose an illness based solely on a virtual visit. As a result, an in-person follow-up appointment may be needed.
All of this leads to a critical question—will the non-acute healthcare industry continue to utilize telehealth at the current rate or will usage slow down?
EXPERTS EXPECT TELEHEALTH TO REMAIN STRONG
The telehealth market is predicted to reach more than $397 billion by 2027, up a significant amount from $80 billion in 2020, according to Fortune Business Insights. The increased use of telehealth has changed some patients’ expectations for receiving care while also encouraging them to be more involved in their health and wellness.
“Telehealth has also become a win for medical professionals and healthcare workers as they are finding patients are more engaged than they were before,” according to Insight, a solutions integrator. “These unexpected benefits have caused medical providers to look toward the future of healthcare to see how telehealth can continue to improve, bringing better outcomes for both doctors and patients.”
According to Insight, 83% of patients said they are likely to continue using telemedicine. “Healthcare organizations that provide easy-to-use, secure telehealth options will not only meet changing expectations, but will cut costs, experience high patient engagement and slow the spread of infection—without sacrificing quality of care,” the company noted.
Chronic care management and mental health are two of many areas that benefit from telehealth. However, one challenge that remains is that doctors are not always able to accurately determine a patient’s symptoms or illness during a remote visit—which means telehealth cannot replace in-person care for all types of appointments.