Telehealth can offer a wide range of benefits to both patient populations and healthcare providers. However, a recent evaluation of 145 studies by the Agency of Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) revealed 5 things that stood out:
- ICU mortalities and length of stay decreased with remote ICU consultations.
- The amount of time patients spent in the ED was reduced when clinicians provided specialty telehealth consultations.
- Access to outpatient care and the outcomes associated with it improved with telehealth consultations.
- Lower confidence levels about the benefits of telehealth remained especially regarding its ability to reduce length of stay and costs, reduce ED visits and the costs associated with them and reduce the costs associated with outpatient visits.
- Remote ICU’s did not appear to benefit from telehealth as much as their acute care counterparts. The study did not reveal any significant reduction in ICU LOS, mortality rates or significantly improved patient satisfaction from outpatient consultations.
However, the benefits of implementing telemedicine do not seem to be equal across all functional areas. Since telehealth is still fairly new, additional research and data will be needed to determine which specific applications best fit individual organizations/functional areas based on their needs. Click here to read more. For related articles, follow us on LinkedIn.