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    Top 10 tips to unlock telehealth’s potential in your practice

    With the advent of new technologies (particularly those enabling real-time video communication), telehealth is becoming an increasingly common means of providing healthcare services.

    Telehealth has some distinct advantages, the most obvious of which is convenience. Patients have quicker access to healthcare when they need it, and practices can cut the costs associated with meeting, managing, and treating clients at their physical locations. Telehealth is also a means of reaching traditionally underserved populations, such as those in rural areas.

     

    Further reading: Here's the key to making virtual visits a digital success

     

    Additionally, telehealth allows doctors to provide virtual care to those with common medical issues that can be treated at home, thereby granting more in-office time to patients who have more serious issues that require immediate attention. In fact, consulting firm Advisory Board reported in 2015 that around 20 percent of all urgent primary care visits could be easily resolved via virtual care.

    Telehealth is growing, too. There’s an increasing number of applications and technologies in the marketplace aimed at connecting providers and patients remotely. Microsoft, for instance, recently opened the Skype online communications platform to developers looking to create apps in the telemedicine space. It’s a good example of the growing telehealth ecosystem.

     

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    The combination of today’s internet speeds (which have improved streaming capacity), smartphone cameras’ capabilities, and applications have made it possible for virtual video examinations to become commonplace.

    Making Telehealth Work for Your Practice

    The good news is that it’s becoming easier than ever to integrate telehealth into practices. For practices looking to implement a telehealth service soon, here are the most important considerations to keep in mind:

    1. Know what hardware you need. If you’ll be monitoring patients remotely, you’ll need to invest in hardware for the patient site that can record and digitally transmit data, such as digital stethoscopes and thermometers. As long as the devices are compatible with your practice’s software, you’ll be able to take advantage of their data-sharing capabilities.

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    Adam Levy
    Adam Levy is the founder of Magnet Solutions Group, an IT company that helps businesses implement secure, agile, and scalable technology ...

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