COVID-19 pandemic is still significantly affecting every aspect of our lives and access to healthcare is no different. Once again, hospitals are reporting an increasing number of COVID-related hospitalizations, leading to less capacity for other patients needing medical treatment. Unfortunately, there are many patients in need of medical care for other, non-COVID-related, conditions and injuries. While it is unavoidable for in-person attention for certain situations/conditions, many non-critical cases can easily be handled via telehealth. In this scenario, for both providers and patients, patient engagement and adherence to the treatment plan are critical for achieving the best clinical outcomes and avoiding unnecessary readmissions.
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Nowadays, we use many telemetry products and gadgets to collect increasingly large and complex datasets daily. It is impossible for humans to process and analyze such a high volume of data quickly enough to understand and utilize it in better care delivery. This is where Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) algorithms come into the equation. Based on the predictions by Global Market Insights, the Healthcare AI market is projected to surpass $34.5 billion by 2027.
While the process of evaluating whether certain telehealth services that were added during the COVID-19 public health emergency should be permanently included in the Medicare telehealth services list is still ongoing, such services will remain on the list until December 31, 2023, when the final decision is expected. The same applies to certain cardiac and intensive cardiac rehabilitation codes, which will also be preserved until 2023. In addition, CMS permanently adopted codes and payments for longer virtual check-in services.
On November 1st, 2021, the American Telehealth Association and nearly 50 other organizations have written a letter to Congress requesting that the temporary pandemic regulations pertaining to telehealth services be made permanent and categorized as an excepted benefit for certain employees.
Remote patient monitoring has been around for some time now. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the benefits of remote monitoring in patient care and helped many chronic disease patients that did not have traditional access to their providers manage their conditions from the comfort of their homes.
COVID-19 pandemic has influenced the rapid adoption of telehealth by providers across the country. During these times many providers were forced to completely switch to telehealth. Both providers and their patients experienced the benefits of telehealth.
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