How Telehealth Can Bring Specialized Healthcare Services To Rural Communities

  • Physician Websites
  • medical management
  • March 26, 2021

Read Time: 8 minutes Rural hospitals have difficulty recruiting specialist physicians. With telehealth, rural hospitals can serve the community and save costs.

A 21st Century Solution For Rural Hospitals

Rural communities are tight-knit groups that heavily rely on public services like hospitals. Rural hospitals, however, have small budgets and big problems. Most have trouble staying open due to issues like Medicaid expansion. Other reasons are the lack of specialized healthcare services that drive revenue. As a result, trusted patients need to travel long distances to get skilled healthcare. What if there was a solution? With telehealth, hospitals can satisfy both patients and the bottom line.

emergency staffing solutions How Telehealth Can Bring Specialized Healthcare Services To Rural Communities

What is telehealth?

Technology has virtually removed geographical obstacles in all areas of life, including healthcare. Using powerful remote technology, hospitals can provide consultations, diagnosis, and patient management. Telehealth encompasses video conferencing, apps, voice calls, and other forms of communication. Telemedicine continues to grow in popularity. In a recent study, 95% of patients approve of the use of telemedicine.

Specialist care from across the country

Telehealth can benefit the rural community in several ways. The main advantage is specialist care from anywhere in the country. Imagine a rural resident with a rare condition or symptoms that need specialist health. Instead of driving hours to find the closest doctor, the town’s hospital can leverage telehealth to serve the patient.

A sensible fix for physician shortages

Attracting permanent or long-term specialized healthcare providers to rural hospitals continues to be a challenge. Specialists choose to operate in urban areas that present more career and social opportunities. Telehealth helps hospitals bring critical care without the added burden of recruitment.

A dollar and a patient saved

In most cases, rural hospitals spend significant amounts on the recruitment process, salary, and incentives. Specialized services are in high demand. Wages are one of the only ways rural hospitals can compete. In the end, there may not be enough patients in the area for a return on investment. Telehealth can improve the margins while improving patient satisfaction.

Long-term care through remote monitoring

Telehealth does not need to be a one-off event. Technology allows continued support and access to specialized services. Remote patient monitoring or RPM helps specialists monitor patient progress by receiving ongoing data on secure devices. RPM even moves care from the hospital to the home. The patient can send information to determine treatment and medication. These remote healthcare providers, in turn, will have full access to devices and tests that are not available in rural areas.

Leverage technology to help the rural community

Technology can help hospitals provide specific care for patients. For rural Americans who need specialists, virtual consultations can save time and money. Hospitals can also lower costs and improve patient care and satisfaction. Telehealth continues to add tremendous value. Soon, these systems will become the norm for rural areas.

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