Telemedicine. The evolution continues. For hospital administrators today, the conversation has switched from “What is Telemedicine?” to “How do I get a Telemedicine program started?” In every situation where inpatient telemedicine is considered, return on investment (ROI) factors prominently in the decision. The four key factors hospitals should consider: Impact on transfers, improved clinical metrics, patient and family satisfaction, and physician retention.
I’ve written frequently in previous blog posts about our physicians’ “webside manner”—their skills in communicating with patients, families and hospital clinical staff. They are very good at making everyone comfortable with the telemedicine environment. But they don’t go it alone. They are partners with hospital clinical staff who serve as their hands when consulting with, diagnosing, and treating patients.
We’ve written frequently about the growing acceptance of telemedicine by hospital clinical staff, patients and their families. Still, we do encounter naysayers along the way.
Fast Track to Licensure: The Convenience of the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact (IMLC) for Telemedicine Providers
Applying for a medical license is often a tedious process, especially when you’re a telemedicine provider who will be providing services in several states simultaneously. With most states taking one to two months to review initial license applications and sometimes an additional two to three months to issue the license, obtaining a license can also be very time consuming. The Interstate Medical Licensure Compact (IMLC) is an expedited process for physicians (who qualify) to use as a pathway to licensure.
Over the past 10 years, Eagle Telemedicine has seen dramatic change in the way the healthcare industry and the public accept what we do. Once viewed as something out of a sci-fi movie, the concept of telemedicine is as familiar to most people today as a Skype or Facetime call with a friend or loved one.
In this blog series, we’re outlining some of the major hurdles to starting a telemedicine program in the hospital setting. Part I dealt with the failure to see the strategic value of telemedicine, and how to overcome it. Here are four other strategic hurdles we have encountered in the quest to gain consensus at the medical staff and board level. Resistance comes in many forms—personal, political, institutional—but it can be overcome with a thorough understanding of telemedicine’s myriad benefits.
Many U.S. hospitals are realizing strong returns on their investments in telemedicine. Staffing gaps are filled, patient transfers are reduced, and Leapfrog scores as well as other metrics are on the uptick. And by the way, their staffing costs have gone down. Despite the success stories, other hospitals struggle, for a variety of reasons, over the question of whether to implement telemedicine. In this new series of blog posts, we’ll cover the strategic and tactical challenges that often arise when a hospital is considering a telemedicine program, and we’ll offer tips on how to meet them. In this first installment, we discuss some of the strategic challenges involved in making the case for telemedicine and encouraging its adoption by a hospital or health system.
You’ve probably seen and heard the terms “telehealth” and “telemedicine” used interchangeably these days, both online and in conversation. It doesn’t matter whether the source is a physician or other healthcare professional or Jane or John Doe. The line between these terms is blurring. Nonetheless, there is a distinction.
Telemedicine’s acceptance among patients and providers is rapidly growing across the country. Many factors have made it possible: the quality and value of programs like Eagle’s, the dependable “always on” technology that can deliver physician expertise to hospitals anywhere, and the widespread acceptance of technological devices in our lives today. All these things have helped make telemedicine a sensible choice for more and more hospitals.
What’s so great about Texas? A lot, quite frankly. Especially when it comes to the growth of telemedicine. (And I’m not just saying that because I’m a lifelong Texan.)