How to Build an Effective Telehealth Strategy
These days, more and more, patients are opting for virtual health care, perhaps spurred even more by the COVID-19 crisis. Telehealth is a significant part of this digital transformation in healthcare.
A recent Huron study showed 55% of health care leaders considered integrating and increasing telehealth capacity their primary focus, and a report by Accenture Health revealed 64% of patients would switch providers if they couldn’t access them, or their data, via telehealth. This is why it’s important for all types of medical providers to prioritize developing a sound telehealth strategy.
Elements of a Comprehensive Telehealth Strategy
Building a telehealth strategy involves many considerations, from patients and doctors to metrics and technology. Here are some must-haves inclusions:
First, patients must be your top priority. Without them, no strategy will be successful, so define patient needs that could be optimized or improved with telehealthcare.
Identify patient groups whose needs could be better met via telehealth options.
Next, answer these questions:
- How many patients do you expect to add?
- How many telehealth visits do you expect per day?
- How will you use virtual care to improve the habits and lives of at-risk patients?
- How will no-show numbers be impacted by telehealth services?
Align your goals with your overall organizational goals, so you can better integrate services, meet your patients’ needs, and determine the best tools for your strategy.
Make sure your telehealth technology reliably integrates with your electronic health records (EHR).
Evaluate and develop partnerships that will support and enhance your telehealth services.
Develop dedicated leadership and teams that will focus on telehealth solutions, technology, assessments, problem-solving, upgrades, and regulation changes.
Set KPIs (key performance indicators) so you can evaluate progress, issues, objectives, and successes. You may include data like experience and satisfaction for both patients and providers, health outcomes, and telehealth utilization.
Establish regular assessments for evaluating data and metrics, identifying areas for improvement, and ensuring efficient work-flows.
Don’t forget patient safety and privacy. These key factors will directly impact your strategy’s success.
Include a chat feature or secure message platform for easy and seamless communication between patients and healthcare providers.
Also, include online registration and check-in features, which will dramatically improve office and waiting room efficiencies.
Establish telehealth guidelines for visits, follow-ups, intakes, and payments.
Before implementation, make sure you train staff, answer questions, and set expectations. This way you can get off to a smooth start.
Ensure your telehealth strategy adopts an agile design, so when the industry landscape changes or new regulations are implemented, you can easily adapt, rather than struggle playing catch-up.
The Future of Medical Care
Telehealth solutions are the new frontier of healthcare. In fact, the industry is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 19.2% a year, with 58% of patients saying they plan on using “telehealth for future healthcare needs.”
Medical providers, from rural clinics to urban hospitals, must create unique strategies that will support the care their patients demand and need.
Telehealth, when effectively implemented, increases access to efficient and expert care, improves health outcomes, lowers costs, and helps lessen disparities in the community. For an effective telehealth strategy, make sure your plan reflects all of these positives and more.
Now, if all these healthcare to-dos are overwhelming, and you’re not sure where to start — we do! Softarex is a strong and experienced technology partner that will complement your total telehealth strategy.
In over 20 years on the market, we have successfully implemented dozens of projects for the healthcare sector. Our customer portfolio includes the leading US and European health tech companies, hospitals, medical centers, and non-profit healthcare communities. At Softarex, we focus on developing effective and intelligent solutions that promote value-based care, automate and optimize workflows, facilitate interoperability and secure data storage, and, more importantly, lead to greater patient outcomes.
Healthcare providers choose us over others because we focus on our customers’ unique needs and needs of their clients, build trust, and deliver measurable benefits for our customers’ businesses. You may have a big, telehealth mission. We have the right talent and tools to help you achieve it. Ready to build your custom solution? Contact us to discuss your needs.