There is an ongoing debate about the efficacy of telehealth and software for doctors. Many believe they can provide clinical evidence, save money, drive revenue, and bring care to the underserved. The rest are concerned that the quality of telemedicine just isn’t as great as an in-person visit.
Whichever side of the argument you are on, we can’t deny that the integration of information technology in healthcare has immense potential. Let’s take a look at the merits and shortcomings of each option.
- Telehealth Visits
Telehealth uses technologies like your smartphone, computer, or tablet to deliver and manage healthcare services from a distance. It is also referred to as telemedicine, virtual care, remote healthcare, and telecare.
Advanced telemedicine solutions allow you to view test results and medications, gather patients’ health data, and provide care services during virtual consultations. They also enable you to write electronic prescriptions, eliminating the possibility of medication errors due to illegible handwriting or misplaced documents.
- Virtual patient visits take less time than in-office visits and are more productive. You can see more patients daily, increasing your customer base.
- Telemedicine gives you greater flexibility as you can see patients anytime and anywhere. You can perform virtual visits on your days off or take a break from a constant stream of patients. This helps fight the “churn and burn” feeling many providers experience.
- You can achieve better patient engagement as virtual visits encourage patients to contact doctors earlier. Telehealth solutions also aid in medication adherence, chronic disease management, following treatment procedures, and monitoring health conditions.
- Some patients might be hesitant to move towards this virtual way of healthcare.
- Conducting physical examinations like a breast exam or using a stethoscope to listen to a heartbeat is not possible.
- Patients might not have access to technologies like a high-speed internet connection or a computer.
- In-Person Visits
For many healthcare providers, building strong relationships with patients is their topmost priority. Patients can connect with you on a personal level when they visit your clinic. Non-verbal cues and body language can be crucial in communication and building rapport.Pros:
- In-person visits do not restrict what you can examine or test during the consultation.
- Patients can get all diagnostic tests done within their appointment time, depending on the equipment available at your healthcare facility. These include X-rays, blood tests, and other imaging scans.
- In-person visits are necessary for medical emergencies where immediate attention and intervention are critical. Quick access to emergency care can be life-saving.
- Due to regulatory burdens and the pressure of generating revenue, providers often rush in-person visits. This makes them look callous or insensitive while patients feel ignored.
- Research reveals that providers spend almost double the amount of time on administrative work (49%) compared to actually seeing patients (27%).
- Patients may experience long wait times in waiting rooms before consulting you. This can lead to frustration and wasted time.
Making the Right Choice
From the above analysis, it’s clear that telehealth can accelerate effective medicine and facilitate deeper patient relationships. It can also improve the continuity of healthcare. Remote monitoring, provider collaboration, and ongoing updates help you follow the narrative thread of a patient’s medical history – fostering meaningful conversations and more consistent care.
When choosing between the two visit types, you need to consider what works best for your patients and organization. Building a facility where both in-person and telehealth appointment types exist can be beneficial in many ways.
It can help you see more patients, boost revenue, and eliminate a filled waiting room without compromising on the time for face-to-face interactions.
Consider scheduling telehealth visits outside your normal schedule to open your practice to more patients. This way, you can continue to offer care from the comfort and privacy of your home while also completing the necessary documentation.
Although telemedicine saw a huge climb during the pandemic, it continues to be a viable option for care. Patients have grown to appreciate the flexibility, convenience, and simplicity of telehealth.
If you’re a provider who hasn’t embraced telemedicine, now is the time to invest in a remote system like HealthPlix EMR for doctors.
Telemedicine solutions are among the most sought-after and essential HealthPlix EMR features we provide to several practices and specialists across different states.
For more information on how our HealthPlix software can significantly improve workflows in your practice, get in touch with us today! Our experts will be happy to explain how we can customize our EMR system to meet your unique requirements.