A Review of Growth in Telehealth

Telehealth is being recognized as an effective method of treatment and healthcare throughout the world. With the rising demand for telehealth, medical fraternities and allied technology providers are looking for ways to make telehealth a better and more sustainable practice.

A recent article in HealthTechZone.com brings forth the present state of telehealth in the world. As one of the premier advocates of telehealth, the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) has been exploring the use of telehealth in order to provide veterans more effective and cost-efficient healthcare facilities. Latest stats revealed by the VA shows that telemedicine visits increased from 1.8 million in 2013, to 2 million this year.

Telehealth is playing a huge role in bringing better medical amenities to remote and impoverished regions that suffer from limited access to physical healthcare facilities. According to the VA, 55% of those who received medical assistance through telehealth were from rural areas that are miles away from VA medical centers.

Considering that the telehealth sector is expected to grow 10 times in the next 4 years, the need for better broadband support is slated to rise as well. Currently, rural healthcare providers (HCP) need to have better access to broadband speeds in order to communicate with patients and other medical staff for telehealth assistance. To improve this situation, Tim Koxlien, founder and CEO of Rural Health Telecom, says, “Upgrading rural healthcare provider broadband networks will be required.” As it relates to telecom accessibility, Koxlien states, “Two of the major challenges for healthcare providers are hardware installation costs and the lack of proper IT support.”

Interestingly, the private sector is also showing significant interest in telemedicine, not only from the business standpoint but also with the aim to add value to people’s lives. For instance, Google is launching a pilot telehealth program that will enable people to connect with medical professionals when they search for basic healthcare queries. Similarly, the Dutch consumer electronics giant, Philips, is partnering with a UN initiative to take telehealth to countries in sub-Saharan Africa and South East Asia with the aim to transform the lives of 100 million women and children by 2025.

With the growing use of telehealth, we are heading towards a promising future where expert-handled, cost-effective treatment will be accessible to one and all.

Do you think telehealth will gradually replace traditional healthcare as a cheaper and more effective healthcare method?

At Avidex AV, we seek to partner with healthcare organizations to deliver audio, video, collaboration and telemedicine solutions that drive innovation and improved efficiencies for our clients. Let’s connect to see how we can help your organization meet its technology needs.

Joel Harris

About Joel Harris

Joel Harris brings invaluable insight to the Avidex team in his role as CEO, with years of experience leading national technology, healthcare and business organizations. You can reach Joel at jharris@avidexav.com

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