Before the global pandemic, telehealth was considered a novelty in patient care. However, due to the COVID-19 restrictions, the role of telemedicine shifted from an additional tool that was only used occasionally, to an essential tool that is used to treat many patients every day. Providers, some of whom have never used telemedicine before, had to quickly adapt and start providing virtual care to their patients. Many providers went from no telemedicine at all to almost completely operating virtually. This rapid change of treatment delivery in just a matter of months has made a significant impact on the different aspects of telehealth.
Due to the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, many Americans have tried telehealth. To better understand the patient perspective on the matter, SYKES, a customer engagement company, has conducted another survey on telehealth as a follow-up on their 2020 telehealth survey. According to the 2021 telehealth survey data that questioned 2000 adult Americans, almost 88% of the respondents want to continue using telehealth for non-urgent care after the pandemic.
The number of respondents who have tried telehealth jumped from about only 20% to a whopping 61%. Also, the willingness to try telehealth jumped from 59.85% to 77.20%.
Some of the other significant findings of the survey are:
- 85% of respondents that have used telemedicine in the past year say that it made it easier to get the care they need
- 51% claims that they were able to see their provider more frequently with the telehealth option
- 38% appreciate the ability to fit in an appointment without having to commute to the provider
- 74% would be willing to share health data from a digital fitness tracker or smart medical device with providers
- 74% believe that telehealth appointments will become a standard of care for non-urgent visits
Overall, the survey results indicate that the demand for telehealth is growing and that the growth is not constrained only by the immediate need due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions. Many that tried telehealth over the course of last year would like to enjoy the benefits of telehealth after the pandemic, and many that have not are willing to try it out.
Vivadox continues to add features and functions that allow healthcare providers to improve their telemedicine services. With the recent introduction of its Free Standard plan, an increasing number of providers can innovate in extending virtual care services to their patients without worrying about cost barriers.
For more information on the SYKES survey visit: https://www.sykes.com/resources/reports/how-americans-feel-about-telehealth-now/