Telehealth: The New House Call
If you could make a statement to the public and policy makers about the state of the medical profession today and how health care delivery can be improved, what would you say?
In Part Three of the Physicians Foundation’s 2020 Survey of America’s Physicians: COVID-19 and the Future of the Health Care System, many physicians shared that they thought the need for and use of telehealth services should continue to be available for patient use, even in a post-pandemic world.
Why? For many patients, telehealth is more accessible and more conducive to the chaos of everyday life, especially during a pandemic. Some feel more comfortable discussing health issues by phone or video vs. in-person. For many physicians, telehealth allows for more patient “visits”, which can increase patient access to care and also encourage more patients to seek necessary care.
Read the direct quotes from physicians about telehealth:
“We need to make sure telehealth services continue to be reimbursed at the current pandemic rates to allow patients more flexibility in meeting their healthcare needs.”
“Telehealth needs to be fully reimbursed or primary care practices will close. Grants for primary care small practices should be considered.”
“Telemedicine makes me able to serve more patients even though I work harder.”
“We are all worn out and ‘frazzled’ as a large number of the population is anxious and depressed with the COVID updates. The video telemedicine has provided a calming influence to many patients and they are very grateful. It should remain as an option.”
“I recommend that telemedicine become a permanent option that continues to be reimbursed at the current levels with availability to all patients.”