Today, people are now more tech-savvy and generally more aware of their health thanks to the internet and a variety of health care apps. Because of this, their demand to receive quality care at lower costs puts healthcare professionals and organizations under tremendous pressure.

To satisfy people’s demands, telehealth has emerged as one of the viable solutions. This solution promises to significantly impact some of the most challenging issues of the current healthcare system that involve access to care, cost-effective delivery, and distribution of limited providers.

Offering telehealth services to patients is important in providing quick and satisfactory healthcare, eliminating patient complaints and stress from inefficiencies such as long wait times, delayed test results, or long wait times for appointments.

Healthcare professionals (HCPs) work hard to become efficient in medical practice and are aware of telehealth technology's potential for providing more efficient medical care. Providers are also keen on ensuring their patients receive the most convenient experience and compassionate care possible with telehealth technology.

This article highlights seven efficiencies that telehealth technology creates to benefit medical practices.

1. Simplifies Appointment Scheduling

Telehealth delivers healthcare services to patients remotely through telecommunication technology, such as live, two-way video, audio or telephone calls, or straightforward texting. Integrating telehealth services allows providers to streamline office processes, such as booking an appointment.

Curogram’s 2-way texting solution, for example, allows providers to send patients a link to a physician’s schedule, showing available dates and time slots a patient can choose that fit their schedule. A patient’s chosen appointment time automatically updates the clinic’s Electronic Health Record (EHR).

With this technology implemented in clinics, front office staff will have a more efficient method to set up appointments, saving both patients and providers precious time spent on phone calls to finalize a schedule.

2. Increases Patient Engagement and Reduces Appointment No-Shows

Even with a telehealth feature giving patients the power to book appointments themselves, medical practices still struggle with patients missing their appointments. There are many probable reasons for this occurrence, including patients forgetting the appointment, mistakenly choosing an inconvenient date and time slot, waking up late, or simply deciding not to show up.

Providers can use telehealth technology to engage patients from when they schedule an appointment to when they arrive. Curogram’s automated 2-way appointment reminder is an example of such technology enabling clinics to send patients customizable and scheduled SMS reminders. You can configure these messages to dispatch days ahead, the day of the appointment, and minutes before. Patients can then respond via SMS to acknowledge the reminder, confirm their attendance, and request to reschedule or cancel the appointment.

This efficient telehealth technology ensures medical practices maximize their time by adjusting their calendar to accommodate other patients instead of idling and waiting for patients they are unsure will show up. According to Curogram, its automated reminders help clinics reduce patient no-shows by up to 75%, reducing the occurrence of wasted unbillable hours.

3. Improves Clinical Workflow

Collecting patient data is critical to a medical practice achieving efficiency and quality patient care. However, the means of fulfilling the task with paper intake forms comes with the following sources of inefficiencies:

  • Patients filling out paper forms crowd waiting rooms
  • Paper intake forms pile up and clutter office space
  • Clinic staff must transcribe data from paper forms to the clinic’s EHR
  • Ineligible handwriting makes data errors common

By implementing telehealth technology, medical practices can offer patients electronic intake forms they can conveniently fill out online using their phone or computer before their appointment. Patients won’t have to be at the clinic physically to fill out the form, relieving the waiting room of unnecessary human traffic. Healthcare staff also do away with the laborious transcription of paper forms and transfer of patient data.

With Curogram, the front office staff sends patients a link to the electronic intake form to finish and upload online. With this technology, clinic staff spends less time performing administrative tasks and have more time to admit and take care of patients.

4. Makes Remote Healthcare Possible and Efficient

Remote healthcare is only possible with a telehealth platform’s live, interactive and two-way video or audio communications. Video or audio conferencing is one telehealth technology that revolutionized healthcare delivery, allowing HCPs to render medical services to patients in distant locations.

Telehealth’s video conferencing is a real-time video chat between providers and patients, similar to an in-person medical consultation. Virtual appointments save patients a lot of time over in-person visits. Telehealth allows patients to start a video call with their physician from anywhere that is private.

Curogram’s virtual visit system has a waiting room and tools that enable front office staff to onboard patients quickly and efficiently. Doctors can see a patient’s status and immediately take video calls. With this technology, medical practices can accommodate more patients daily, increasing their revenue.

5. Makes Sharing Medical Data Quick and Efficient

Store-and-forward telehealth technology transmits medical information among healthcare providers through telecommunication means. Advancements in health information technology make this exchange of information safer, more precise, and quicker.

With store-and-forward technology, telehealth platforms enable medical practices to send lab test results and scan images or photos of patient conditions in real-time, improving immediate care.

6. Improves Remote Patient Care

Advancements in telecommunication allow telehealth to integrate Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) into its array of services to better execute and achieve higher efficiency in delivering remote healthcare. RPM maximizes both hardware and software capabilities to observe, record, and transmit a patient’s symptoms and other medical information regardless of location in real-time.

This telehealth technology requires wearable gadgets and medical devices that read vital signs, such as heart rate and blood sugar monitors, with a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connection, allowing doctors to observe and record the data.

7. Improves Healthcare Access

According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), an electronic health record is any medical information on an individual created, gathered, managed electronically, and consulted by authorized HCPs.

EHRs are crucial to improving healthcare access and continuity. Telehealth platforms must integrate with EHRs to allow access to patient information for the right providers and office staff. Curogram, for example, integrates with over 700 EHRs, saving your practice valuable time from manually entering the medical information into your electronic health record.

In providing remote healthcare, medical practices will rely more and more on telehealth technology. Curogram offers tech capabilities to make the lives of both providers and patients more convenient. The potential of telehealth technology in improving medical practices is not limited by the seven efficiencies discussed. We can expect to discover more efficiencies shaping the future of modern healthcare. It is a future where you can enjoy the benefits of telehealth technology with Curogram.

7 Efficiencies Created by Telehealth Technology