8 Things You Should Know/ by: Judith Stanton
Telehealth is growing by exponentially a $25.4 billion in 2020 and expected to grow to $55.6 billion by 2025. What about the technology? How are seniors staying actively engaged during the holidays through telehealth?
What telehealth is not, is something every user should be concerned about. Telehealth benefits individuals who have general questions about their health. For example, Q: "What was my last blood pressure reading?", Q: "What should I do if I have an allergic reaction to a medication the doctor recently prescribed?" Q:"How secure is telehealth, is my information secure?"
There are benefits to Telehealth. One benefit is convenience. Some studies suggest improved patient outcomes. Efficiency and improved outcomes, quicker service for the patients. Quicker service depends on the location, service connection, internet speed, and technology. Consider living in a rural area, where physicians office could be 20-25 miles one way. If family or friends are not available to drive the patient to appointments, telehealth would be something to utilize. Telehealth does not replace emergency situations. The last thing you want to do is get on a telehealth conference if your health is in an emergency status. Call 911 so they can get your location.
Check your insurance policy to see if they cover telehealth. The last thing you want is a large bill, because insurance doesn't cover a percentage of the bill. Laws and telehealth are different in each state. Telehealth is also different for Veterans, for more information go to Health Talk to your Doctor | Telehealth VA
Before making a decision to go to telehealth, it is good to have a conversation with the clinic manager, nurse, and physician about your concerns. Also look into online classes that teach basic computer skills, so you can be prepared to use the technology efficiently. Of course there are always glitches in technology, follow up with a paper trail, and request about the appointment or call the clinic to confirm any changes.
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