Telemedicine Provider e-health button on keyboard

Telemedicine Provider Teladoc’s Bold Move

Teladoc has popped up in the news quite a bit lately as a telemedicine provider. Well-known for their strong presence in the direct-to-consumer (DTC) telemedicine market, they’ve been expanding their global reach lately by acquiring smaller DTC telemedicine companies such as Best Doctors, Advance Medical, French company MédecinDirect, and others. So far, they’ve focused on accessing patients either directly or through business partnerships. Now, however, in a move aimed at medical facilities, Teledoc has announced its purchase of telemedicine vendor InTouch Health. Read more

Telehealth for astronauts aboard the International Space Station over the planet Earth. Elements of this image furnished by NASA

Telehealth for Astronauts: Unearthing Deadly Risks

When we think of telemedicine sessions, most of us probably picture consultations that take no longer than a typical appointment; once a treatment plan is agreed upon, only brief follow-up telemedicine visits remain. But what if the patient isn’t on earth? As reported by Forbes, in the longest telemedicine consultation on record, a U.S. astronaut has been successfully treated for a potentially fatal condition while living on the International Space Station (ISS). Read more

Telemedicine services or urgent care services? Injured girl receiving first aid

How Do Telemedicine Services Affect the Primary Care Model?

Recent surveys from the Kaiser Family Foundation have shown that roughly one in four American adults have not chosen a regular doctor that they see for general ailments. For adults under age 30, that ratio jumps to nearly half. For a health care system originally built on primary care-centered medicine—which has proven to reduce health care costs by one-third—this is unsettling news indeed. However, evolving technologies such as telemedicine services are re-shaping the health care landscape, forcing existing generalists to adapt to the new paradigm for survival. Read more

Doctor holding smartphone for electronic prescription per telemedicine prescribing laws

Telemedicine Prescribing Laws Inch Forward

More than a decade after the passage of the Ryan Haight Online Pharmacy Consumer Protection Act of 2008, the US Drug Enforcement Agency is finally taking steps to fulfill a task assigned by the legislation: the creation of a special registration process for telemedicine prescribing laws by which healthcare providers can apply for authorization to prescribe controlled substances to new patients they have never met in the office, instead examining them only via the “practice of telemedicine.” This long-overdue measure has been welcomed by organizations including the American Telemedicine Association and the Center for Telehealth & e-Health Law, who have long been lobbying the DEA to take action. Read more

girl, using inhaler, embraces allergy telemedicine

Pediatric Allergy Telemedicine Welcomed by Patients and Families

Last year, the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) formally endorsed the use of telemedicine for allergy and immunology care. Now, after examining pediatric allergy patients’ experiences with asthma or allergy telemedicine over a three-year period, a team of researchers has found that roughly two-thirds of the respondents were equally satisfied with the telemedicine appointment as compared to a traditional, in-office appointment; the remaining one-third felt even more satisfied with the telemedicine encounter than an in-office visit. Read more

Child with book for telehealth certification

Avera eCare to Develop New Telehealth Certification Program

In a nascent, growing field yet to standardize one generally-accepted standard for accreditation or certification, another player is entering the field. Avera eCare, one of the country’s largest telehealth networks, is developing a national telehealth certification program with a $4.3 million grant from the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust. The program will allow healthcare providers to earn either a general certificate in telehealth as a delivery model or a specialty certificate in telemental health. Read more

Telemedicine in hospitals as demonstrated by patient, nurse, and physician

Beyond the ER: Expanding Telemedicine in Hospitals

At Cleveland Clinic, recovering stroke and epilepsy patients can use the TV in the room to watch a movie—or see their physicians for a follow-up visit via video conferencing. Last July, the facility opened a neurology step-down unit that had been newly-equipped with telemedicine capabilities. The director of Cleveland Clinic’s cerebrovascular center, Muhammad Shazam Hussain, MD, was interviewed recently about introducing telemedicine in hospitals, outside of emergency rooms. Read more

Doctor Accessing Data within Blockchain in Telemedicine

Exploring Blockchain in Telemedicine

In previous years, the buzz around blockchain technology has centered mostly around cryptocurrency. As blockchain becomes a more widely understood and accepted concept, however, early adopters in other industries are beginning to envision upgrades in healthcare delivery that could result from the integration of blockchain technology—essentially, blockchain in telemedicine. Touted for its ability to decentralize control of protected health information (PHI) while maintaining trust, accountability, security, and transparency in its data transactions, blockchain can offer a reliable method for transporting and verifying sensitive information while providing clinical researchers with a wealth of anonymous data. Read more

generic telemedicine app on tablet for telemedicine adoption rates

How to Raise Your Telemedicine Adoption Rates

Many people believe that older Americans don’t like new technology, don’t know how to use it, and don’t want it. On the other end of the spectrum, they perceive millennials—the youngest adults—as being born with video game controllers in their hands and embracing any form of technology, almost favoring superficial virtual interactions over deep, interpersonal relationships. Are these myths or facts? Out of these statements, survey results support just two claims: In general, older adults often want to but don’t know how (or are unable) to use the latest technology, and millennials do not value the continuity of care and long-term relationship provided by a primary care physician (PCP) as much as previous generations do. As any organization strives to increase telemedicine adoption rates, it may behoove marketing to emphasize different benefits of telemedicine according to the specific needs and preferences of each generation. Read more

EMT first aid bag prior to emergency telemedicine program

Six Tips for Planning Your Emergency Telemedicine Program Smartly

Five years ago, the Houston Fire Department (HFD) developed the Emergency Telehealth and Navigation (ETHAN) program as a way to respond to every call by providing the appropriate level of health care rather than bringing everyone to the emergency department—without using up resources to transport non-emergency patients. Since its inception, the ETHAN project has picked up a few tips that could prove helpful if your organization is designing, or will design, an emergency telemedicine program. Read more