THOUGHTS

Category Scan: Telehealth Services Market Innovations and Updates 2019

Mar 25, 2019

When it comes to the telehealth services market, our experts predict that the industry has reached a tipping point. Increasing consumer demand, technological advancements, and innovative research activities have reached a stage where the law of accelerating returns states that “technological advances will be exponential rather than linear.” This basically means that with technology becoming increasingly effective, greater resources will have to be dedicated to furthering its reach and impact.

The article below scans the category for telehealth services in its entirety to help healthcare companies understand and stay abreast of the latest news, innovations, and market developments.

Telehealth Services: Recent Innovations and Market Updates 2019

Emerging innovations in the self-service arena

Technological innovations like artificial intelligence are gradually finding their way into telehealth services. The use of such tech trends in telehealth apps not only guides patients through a series of questions and collects data but is also capable of interpreting these user responses. This means that a tremendous amount of groundwork can be completed before the patient connects with the provider, making clinical interactions more efficient and focused.

Direct to consumer market has matured

Direct to consumer is one of the commercially successful telehealth services segments that has attracted the maximum health technology investment. A couple of telehealth services providers own a significant chunk of the market share in the direct-to-consumer market.  It encompasses several products and services and enables the highest level of quality and cost-effective healthcare for patients, irrespective of their geographic location. However, healthcare systems struggle to turn this form of technology into a profitable revenue stream as consumers have been slow to adopt this model. It attracts a new set of consumers who might not otherwise use medical services, thereby, driving costs up.

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Telemedicine kiosks to dispense prescription medication

Although the use of self-service kiosks in hospitals and clinics are becoming common, the use of kiosks to provide healthcare assistance outside hospital premises is a fairly new concept in healthcare. A company based out of the US recently launched telemedicine service kiosks that can dispense prescription medications. These kiosks are primarily aimed at patients with non-life-threatening conditions like colds, rashes, and fever. The company claims that its HIPAA compliant telemedicine stations can be deployed in airports, hotels, colleges, and large private employers. Their telemedicine station is equipped with thermal imaging capability to detect body temperature and diagnose infections. It also helps in analyzing height, weight, and blood pressure. Each unit also includes a locked dispensary, which contains a number of the most commonly prescribed medications in the most commonly prescribed dosages, which can be prescribed at the end of a telehealth visit. Such innovative telehealth services will be highly useful in providing faster and easier healthcare access to patients.

Provider collaboration offering opportunities for growth

Provider collaboration could play a major role in enhancing communication between physicians, specialists, and nursing staff. Furthermore, it helps physicians to seek the expertise that they don’t possess. A classic example of this is the use of telestroke in the emergency room, a technology that was introduced in 2015 at the University of Minnesota Medical Center. It provides neurologists immediate access to incoming stroke patients through emergency room video conferencing. There are a huge number of companies leveraging such telehealth services.

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Building telemedicine capabilities into new spaces

This is one of the most recent and interesting paradigms in the telehealth services market. It involves the idea that patients can be treated through telemedicine in the hospital, at home, in nursing homes, in physician’s offices and other places. These types of telehealth services aim to promote the idea that rather than forcing patients in need of care to travel, they can be provided with care in the space that is most convenient to them. Equipping nursing homes and hospital rooms with technologies to facilitate this would enable a variety of practitioners to provide bedside care more conveniently. In this case, the transportation of patients can be avoided and practitioners can access more patients without disruption. In addition, the primary care provider, family, and friends located elsewhere could link into the video consultations.  This plays a major role in enhancing the communication between all parties involved in the patient’s care.

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