If considering implementing telehealth video solutions, this article provides an overview of how to successfully integrate it
According to a recent study on the adoption of video solutions for telehealth conducted by Vidyo, more than 75% of nurses, physicians, healthcare administrators and IT professionals in healthcare use or plan to use telehealth solutions. The reason is the advantages that live video and remote patient monitoring offer.
Even with the many advantages of telehealth, many institutions in the healthcare sector remain reticent. According to the Vidyo study, some of the main reasons why they are cautious about adopting virtual medicine are:
- Lack of demand to justify the spending.
- Implementation costs.
- Complexity of the project.
- Staff shortages and infrastructure problems.
Keep reading to know how Vidyo can help you overcome all these barriers to successfully implement a telehealth strategy in healthcare facilities.
Lack of demand:
Doctors often don’t know exactly what telehealth is and how it can help them simplify their work and reach more patients. They also often assume that patients prefer face-to-face treatment, when in reality, many patients prefer the convenience and personalisation of a virtual consultation.
Just as explaining the benefits of a medication or therapy to the patient is a best practice, clearly communicating the how and why of a telehealth programme to doctors, other staff and patients is critical for stakeholders to truly understand the level of demand for it.
Costs and complexity of implementation:
Bad experiences in implementing data protection systems that were costly, complicated, time-consuming and involved a large consumption of computer resources created a perpetual rejection for the implementation of telehealth.
This fear in hospital systems burdened with system implementation and upgrade needs is unreasonable, just look at the case of Vanderbilt University Medical Center. This $3 billion medical university ended 2018 with $44.4 million in revenue, a 60% decrease from $110 million in 2017. Vanderbilt attributes this large revenue loss to the cost of implementing the new data protection system.
Video solutions for telehealth implementation is much less difficult because it can, and should, be done in a customised way. A cloud-based platform consumes fewer internal resources because it requires no hardware or software management. For those reticent to accept the complete move to the cloud, hybrid models can be built. These allow local traffic while enjoying the advantages of cloud connectivity.
Compliance with the privacy and data protection law:
Now that healthcare is highly questioned for being the industry with the most data security breaches, it is understandable that hospitals and health systems are quite concerned about data protection in telehealth.
According to the HIMSS Analytics study, it is a “major obstacle”, especially for ambulatory services. For those who use telehealth to treat mental health cases or behavioural disorders, there is an additional concern that other family members may overhear private conversations between the doctor and the patient.
To alleviate data protection concerns, physicians need to be more careful about the type of telehealth solution they use.
Asynchronous telehealth platforms are emerging. Advocates say they give more options for evidence-based diagnostics with low risk. However, video solutions for telehealth are generally more secure because they do not store patient health information.
In addition, there must be virtual consent forms between patient and doctor, and any virtual medicine solution must include a contractual agreement with the technology provider to ensure both patient agreement and regulatory compliance.
Staff shortages and infrastructure problems:
Clinical staff and other infrastructure issues are important considerations for all healthcare organisations considering telehealth. Those that have addressed it have pointed to several factors for easy adoption and integration:
Start a small pilot test, perhaps with existing staff, and then integrate it into processes to make telemedicine “part of the job”. Then the volume of interactions may make it necessary to add specialied telehealth staff.
Technology, as always, is evolving. Many elements of telehealth are available via smartphone or tablet, making it available for remote treatment. Vidyo can be used with minimal data packets and fits broadband.
Integration with other computer systems, surprisingly, is not as relevant a consideration as some believe. Many who have gone through a telehealth integration have found it quite easy to do, and in fact, say that the integration into the clinical workflow was more complex than the technology integration itself.
Implementing video solutions for telehealth is an ideal solution to address many gaps in the healthcare system, such as the chronic lack of primary care physicians for vulnerable populations in inaccessible locations.
If you want to know more about the benefits of implementing a telehealth solution and how to make the integration work, click on the button.