Telehealth Predictions for 2021
December 28, 2020
Over the past year, telehealth has skyrocketed in popularity. This digital offering has enabled healthcare professionals to provide care remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic. As 2020 draws to a close and 2021 begins, we want to give you our predictions for how telehealth will advance in the year ahead.
The Role of Telehealth in 2020
To understand what is in the works for telehealth in 2021, we must first understand what happened in the industry this year. The American Hospital Association has released research about remote care over the past decade. Key findings include…
- Today, 76% of American hospitals connect patients with practitioners through video or other technology.
- The use of telehealth in hospitals has grown rapidly, jumping from 35% in 2010 to 76% in 2017.
- Nearly every state Medicaid program has some type of coverage for telehealth services.
- More than half of hospitals have implemented some type of remote patient monitoring capabilities.
In the pandemic, virtual visits have exploded in popularity. The Journal of American Informatics Association published data which indicated that virtual urgent care visits had grown by 683% at NYU Langone Health. Their nonurgent virtual visits grew by 4,345% between March 2nd and April 14th.
A large portion of this is due to the elimination of regulatory behaviors, increased access to care, and changes to insurance coverage for telehealth services.
These trends have continued throughout the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. With a new year approaching, we have reason to believe that telehealth will remain an important standard in patient care.
What We Can Expect in 2021
Prepare for another surge in telehealth. At least in the first half of the year, we anticipate that the push for telehealth will continue. A report from Deloitte predicts that virtual visits will raise to 5% globally, up from 2019’s 1%. They believe that there will be more than 400 million video visits to doctors worldwide in the new year.
Patients will adapt and learn more sophisticated platforms. The pandemic has required even the most tech-averse Americans to adapt. Deloitte’s report also indicates that consumers, especially seniors, have developed an improved understanding of video-calling apps and remote visits.
Patients will continue to request telehealth services. Research shows that telemedicine visits resolve patient concerns a large amount of the time – nurse advice lines and virtual visits provided 85% of patients with a good resolution to their issue. This number beats out the success rate for in-person appointments, which sits at just 64%.
Rural patients will gain increased access to remote care. At the beginning of the pandemic, patients in rural areas struggled to access telehealth. Their provider may not have had this capability, or they themselves may have lacked a stable internet connection or good cell service. Current trends indicate that these concerns may be resolved in 2021 if the pandemic persists.
Investment in remote healthcare solutions will increase. To keep up with patient demand and to provide quality care, healthcare providers will need to invest in effective solutions. For many, these include nurse advice lines, phone nurse triage services, and HIPAA-compliant video calling platforms. For others, they involve the optimization of their current practices – specifically, contracting a company which can manage care during off hours and integrate with their EMR system. We hope that IntellaTriage can occupy this space for providers nationwide.
How We Intend to Advance the Telehealth Space
IntellaTriage is the #1 provider of licensed, nurse-based triage and telehealth solutions. Our system is comprised of licensed RNs who are able to seamlessly integrate with your team, updating EMRs and providing advanced analytics about patient encounters. With a 40-second average wait time, your patients are never left on hold.
Over the years, we have created a powerful system for effective, efficient patient care. In 2021, we intend to develop further solutions for improved quality of care and an impressive technical user experience.
Partnering with IntellaTriage stops nursing staff burnout and helps you to save money, all while offering the highest quality of care. Our approach is purposefully unique; we believe that your patients should speak to a licensed, registered nurses with expertise in your specific field. IntellaTriage serves as an integrated partner in your practice, ensuring that your clients receive the highest quality of care at any time – day or night.
We provide services tailored to the needs of practices, health plans, and hospice and home health providers. To learn more about how our unique offerings can optimize your practice, contact us today.