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The service of telehealth is not new, and it has existed for quite some time. In the United States, telehealth has been used long before the pandemic. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic, more people have turned to telehealth and telemedicine. The reason behind this was the impossibility of going to the doctor for anything less than an emergency, given that a highly transmissible virus started affecting so many so fast.

With this, many individuals started to notice the many advantages of using telehealth and telemedicine. At the same time, doctors have begun to provide more of this service to be able to meet the demand and help people who prefer using telehealth. Technology plays a significant role in this, given that it facilitates communication between doctor and patient. With a combination of digital tools, telehealth can be an efficient method and, this way, you don’t have to go to the doctor’s office every time. But, if you are a bit doubtful about the quality of this service and whether it really works and is effective, we have compiled a list of benefits.

More people can access specialized care

Apart from the clear reason for a pandemic happening, telehealth is also the preferred method of accessing healthcare for people who reside in secluded places. In this case, the nearest medical facility could still be too far away, so if you need regular check-ups, you cannot afford to travel back and forth, or you don’t have access to transportation, telehealth could actually be lifesaving. It isn’t uncommon for people in this situation to neglect to go to the doctor. Such an option is not recommended, as not only can it worsen someone’s health condition if untreated, but you might be unaware of a health problem.

Telehealth allows more people to access specialized care. Apart from helping people who live far away from a medical facility, it can also benefit whoever cannot go due to unsynchronized schedules. For instance, some people might have unusual work schedules and not finish before their doctor leaves their office, or maybe they are stay-at-home parents and keep postponing going to the doctor until they can find a reliable babysitter. No matter the reason, it is essential to acknowledge that people’s lives can get hectic, and it isn’t uncommon to neglect doctor appointments, blaming it on the fact that they have limited time. In the U.S., a person only goes to the doctor four times per year, on average. With telehealth, people can access healthcare services from the comfort of their homes.


A combination of telehealth and physical consultations

It is of the utmost importance to mention that a combination of telehealth and physical consultations is highly effective in receiving the best care. By using telehealth, more people can commit to their regular check-ups and neglect this aspect less, given that this service is convenient. However, it is vital not to substitute physical appointments with telehealth entirely.

If you have a health condition of which you are aware and follow treatment, you can use telehealth to manage your situation better and communicate with your doctor more often. What’s more, if you are suspected of a specific health condition, a medical professional who is offering consultation via telehealth services will be able to direct you to a specialized doctor. This way, your telehealth physician will have your medical history in one place, which supports other doctors during the first consultation to put a diagnosis.


Increased access to mental health services

Another reason why telehealth can revolutionize modern healthcare services is with respect to mental health. Thanks to telemedicine, more people are accessing mental health services. For many people, opening up and discussing any type of mental health illness is still difficult and a challenge they are not ready to overcome. The reason behind this might be the stigma that still exists around mental health and the fact that if you seek help, it is a sign of weakness. Although this is a misconception, it is enough to cause people to avoid the problem rather than treating it.

The good news is that telehealth has maximized access to mental health services. This area is benefitting, given that little to no physical consultation is needed to treat mental health disorders, such as anxiety or depression. Video communication not only supports patients who need to speak with a professional but are skeptical to go to their office, but it also facilitates current patients with their ongoing session.Plus, if they need a brief conversation with their psychotherapist to discuss an urgent matter, that could quickly escalate if the option of using telehealth wasn’t available.

Telehealth is less expensive

Depending on your location, medical insurance, and financial means, this aspect might not be an issue for you. However, as there are many people who do not have access to various healthcare services due to low incomes and soaring costs, the aspect of affordability is of the utmost importance. Another benefit of using telehealth services is the fact that it is less expensive. In 2020, the U.S. federal agency, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, announced that the use of telehealth would be financially covered. In this case, doctors can offer this option to their patients who have limited financial resources, knowing that any virtual consultation will be reimbursed.

Telehealth supports people with disabilities

For people who have mobility issues, the mere act of going to the doctor’s office and back can be pretty tiring and strenuous. Although many facilities have ramps and elevators to facilitate movement for a person in a wheelchair, these patients might not want to go to their doctor for things that could be solved with a discussion.

So, if you need to consult a medical professional for an urgent issue but don’t necessarily need a physical consultation – as is the case for mental health counseling or if you are suffering from a specific allergy – you can make use of telehealth. This way, you don’t have to leave your home, and you can still get the professional help you need.