• Benefits of Telemedicine and Telehealth for Small Practices

      Kamra, Channu; Baskaran, Vikraman (2021)
      As the world has drastically changed due to the impacts of COVID-19, the healthcare industry is now adopting telemedicine a lot more. This heavy adoption rate has caused a lot of changes to how patient received their care. Smaller practices that once did not use telemedicine are now using it to keep their workers and patients safe. This research aims to understand the impacts these changes have on the patients and providers. Perspectives from both groups can yield results that allow telemedicine to grow more and create a more considerable impact on the healthcare industry. Before this can happen, telemedicine must prove to provide benefits to the groups being examined. This research looks to survey both the patients and the providers to see if telemedicine can benefit smaller practices. Data will also be collected to see the difference in costs between in-person and telemedicine visits. The practice where the research study will be taking place is called Lifeline Primary Care. Two different surveys will be used for this research. One survey will focus on the patients and gauging their interaction with the telemedicine visit. This survey will also grab some patient demographics to help understand any indirect costs associated with them. Information such as work, and distance traveled to receive care will be used to determine these indirect costs. The second survey will be provider-based and focus more on the questions that will show telemedicine's advantages and disadvantages. These surveys will be created on survey monkey and sent to patients via text or email, same for providers. Direct costs data will be collected from the providers for two months. These costs will help determine the cost-effectiveness of telemedicine. With all the information put together, a better case can be made for the future of telemedicine post-pandemic. Research articles mentioned in this proposal have run similar studies on telemedicine. So, the results should be similar to these studies. This research aims to see if telemedicine provides benefits to smaller practices today that are rapidly adopting it. These benefits could potentially allow for advancement or at least lead to improvements where telemedicine is currently lacking. It allows patients and providers to become more accustomed and make it part of their routine when visiting. Telemedicine has so much potential in providing quality care for patients in so many ways that understanding its benefits can help the healthcare industry go a long way.