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sick woman on couch talking on laptop video call

Flu Telemedicine Surges in Popularity

According to the Centers for Disease Control Surveillance, this flu season has been among the worst of this decade. Fortunately, instead of clogging doctors’ offices, some patients have checked their symptoms with physicians via flu telemedicine. In recent months, multiple consumer-facing telehealth providers have reported significant increases in flu-related cases, leading to intriguing implications for the future of infectious disease management. Read more

5G wireless network antenna clipart

For Telemedicine, 5G Networks Hold Promise

The recent speculation over whether the U.S. federal government might build a 5G network brings up an intriguing question: Does telemedicine need 5G networks? At first glance, the answer may appear to be a resounding “Yes” because most telemedicine systems require high-bandwidth networks in order to function reliably. However, a closer look at the current market suggests that a more cautious approach may be warranted. When it comes to telemedicine, 5G may not be a panacea after all—at least not today. Read more

nurse taking patient's blood pressure at home

The Year Ahead in Healthcare Delivery

In 2017, we watched the beginning of a trend toward value-based and patient-centered care, but where is healthcare delivery headed in the coming months? As 2018 unfolds, we at swyMed expect continued growth in patient-centered care, particularly in the following areas: Read more

woman suffering from pollen allergy

Telemedicine for Allergies Receives Key Endorsement

Telemedicine for allergies has been endorsed by the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) in recognition of the care delivery platform’s capacity to improve patients’ adherence, outcomes, access to care, and costs. The organization’s latest policy paper outlines 14 position statements on telemedicine adoption, policy, and platform development as they relate to allergy and immunology care. Read more

weight scale and mobile app

Telemedicine for Weight Loss Works Out Well

A recent study has shown that telemedicine for weight loss is effective in helping participants lose significantly more weight than individuals who do not engage in remote health coaching. Combined with physical activity monitoring and low glycemic carbohydrates, the key component appears to be ongoing support through weekly telemedicine sessions with a health coach. Read more

woman checking skin for melanoma

Teledermatology Can Save Lives

Frustrated with lengthy wait times to see a dermatologist, a group of community health centers in Massachusetts has negotiated their own telemedicine reimbursement with four health plans to implement a teledermatology program in order to improve access. Backed by a Partnership for Community Health grant, in its first year the platform has expedited more than 112 cases and referred 60 percent back to the primary care physician without a need for an in-person dermatology visit, saving an estimated 30 percent in annual costs by eliminating unnecessary specialist consults. Read more

businessman touching internet concept

How Does the Net Neutrality Repeal Affect Telemedicine?

Last month, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted 3-2 along partisan lines to repeal the 2015 ruling that instituted net neutrality. When the repeal takes effect in February, internet service providers (ISPs) will no longer be prohibited from blocking or slowing particular web content, or from charging distinct prices for different connection speeds. While some experts welcome the freedom of an open internet, transparency rules, and the stimulation of business development, others are more skeptical of the ramifications of such a move on the telemedicine industry and its patients. Read more

Stethoscope and gavel

Year in Review: 2017 Telemedicine Legislation

Over the last year, 63 pieces of telemedicine legislation focusing on telemedicine were approved in 34 states, according to the Center for Connected Health Policy. These bills facilitated multi-state medical licenses, defined terminology, and established care standards, among other issues. Read more

Telemedicine Specialists: A New Discipline?

Considering the steady growth of the telemedicine industry, two physicians at New York-Presbyterian have proposed the creation of a new specialty representing the “medical virtualist.” In a recent JAMA Viewpoint article, the authors cite a combination of the lack of oversight, inconsistent training, and specific skill sets, including webside manner, as compelling reasons for certifying full-time telemedicine specialists with a defined set of core competencies. Read more

Doctor on tablet concept

Remote Patient Evaluation (RPE) Is Ready for Primetime

To date, remote patient monitoring (RPM) has used digital technologies to collect health data from patients in one place and transmit that information securely to case managers somewhere else. This approach has proven useful for caregivers to prioritize follow-ups and monitor compliance as they have easy access to real-time data such as: weight, glucose levels, blood pressure, heart rate, air flow and even subjective survey data trends measured by patients in the comfort of their homes. Read more