There are many issues that the American healthcare system is dealing with. The broken healthcare system results in problems for physicians as well as the patients. Coronavirus pandemic has also shed light on many of the deep-rooted glitches contributing to the healthcare system’s inadequacies and tremendous gaps in healthcare delivery. Let’s take a brief look at the leading factors contributing to these issues and how telemedicine can offer practical solutions.
One of the most common reasons people end up delaying or not taking treatment at all is the high costs of medical care in the US.
In America, an average of $2,500 is spent per person on just the healthcare administrative costs. A report shows that overall the average healthcare prices increased 15 percent in 2018, in comparison with 2014.
Patients also report a lack of insurance coverage and very high premiums. For example, in 2019, for a family of four, the average annual premium rate was $20,576.
Many of them also end up receiving a varying amount of care while incurring additional costs of travel, sitters, and communication. Other patients can only see physicians during weekends or time-off, which means that even physician offices have rush days.
People often find it difficult to access the physician credentials, and many patients end up not finding an appropriate or qualified physician to get treated. Unverified online information is usually their only source to get to a good physician.
Primary care physicians are also very small in number compared to the need of the US population. Estimates show that there are 14,000 too few primary care physicians, and the gap is likely to increase by 2030. Due to the high study debt of the medical students, they tend to be attracted towards high-paying specialties. This means that you are more likely to find a physician to treat a chronic issue than something mundane like the flu.
A physician can only see a limited amount of patients every day. With in-person visits, physicians end up spending more time per person and too for issues that could have quickly been resolved within a few minutes if an appropriate system is set in place for the physician to review cases and see patients in a specific manner.
To optimize their practices, the physicians may spend more time in the office and suffer from burnout. Burnout has been identified as a common reason for physicians to retire sooner than they have to. An Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) report attests to this fact.
Another Annals of Internal Medicine study shows that for every direct face time hour spent by the physicians with patients, they end up spending two more hours on HER and desk work. And these are only the time estimations for the day. For each night, they can end up spending 1 to 2 such additional hours. And what is the result? Yes, the burnout, rushed visits, and patients that think they have not gotten the full attention of the physician.
Telecure was started by a group of people who have experienced many of these difficulties themselves in their practices and as patients. The company aims to deliver affordable and accessible medical solutions to informed patients while maximizing the profits for the physicians and reducing the additional burden of their practice.
While we started working a few years ago, one of the most significant shifts was seen in 2020 with the adoption of telemedicine by both the providers and the public in huge numbers. We have a firm belief that telemedicine can offer effective and long-term solutions to the issues faced by the American healthcare system. This belief comes from solid scientific evidence.
A Massachusetts General Hospital study has shown that during telemedicine visits, patients can form stronger connections with the physicians that can increase treatment compliance, feel more relaxed and candid with the physician, and not have to wait long hours just for a few minutes of the physician’s time.
A telehealth visit can mean up to 95 percent more face time with the physician compared to 20 percent in an in-person appointment. Virtual visits can also mean that physicians provide focused attention to one patient at a time. In the end, it is all about the needs of the patient and the physician and nobody else.
When telemedicine is the medium of your communication, many unrelated third parties go out of the equation, and both of the concerning parties can focus on what matters the most; effective healthcare delivery with the minimum amount of resources being spent by both the patient and the physician.