Mar 01

Would you pay for Virtual Care?

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Everyone’s time is valuable and most patients and care-givers are sick of travelling and waiting for a face to face consultation. Virtual Care is a “win- win” for the business, healthcare providers and patients.  Forbes reported that in the US, revenue for video consultations alone will increase from less than $100 million in 2013 to $13.7 billion in 2018. Would you pay for virtual care, from your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, whole healthcare team? I would.



 3 things virtual care can achieve for your business

  • Extend reach (physical locations) and expand the types of services you can provide to your clients.
  • Increase the number of clients who can be seen and treated and your revenue.
  • Improve your customer satisfaction and quality of care delivery.

3 lessons we have learned about virtual care

  • Support virtual care with good accessible technology. This will include both the technology required for the virtual connection, patient monitoring and record keeping.
  • Set and publish clear boundaries of the services that can be provided by virtual care and what cannot.
  • Make it affordable. For this to work it must be affordable for all parties.

Where can you receive Virtual care? Last year the first Virtual Care Center was established in the US. The Mercy Virtual Care Center, this facility healthcare team provides Mercy’s 46 hospitals with remote ICU monitoring ( Mercy SafeWatch), access to stroke specialists (Telestroke), Home Monitoring and Nurse On Call. The center is equipped with two-way cameras, online-enabled instruments and real-time vital signs that allow providers to “see” patients in a traditional hospital, a physician office and the patient’s home.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia the Ministry of Health (MOH) in 2013 launched the (937) Service Center, to serve as a link between the citizen and MOH  by means of receiving all citizens’ calls around the clock and dealing with them, as soon as possible, at the highest quality. They recently reported that 17% of the calls are medical consultations in various specialties.

In Australia, nurses employed by Victoria’s Royal District Nursing are using MyCareManager , where a nurse can video call a patient on a wireless tablet at their home, watch the patient take their medicine or test their blood pressure or glucose.

While virtual care is expanding slowly, this will need to move from an innovation in a few areas to widespread adoption, to be able to address the major healthcare issues such as the growing need for doing more with less and patients wanting to be more involved with their own health.


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