The concept of “telehealth” has appeared as an umbrella term for the wide range of technologies and methods which are used to bring virtual healthcare services for patients and providers. The keyword in this concept is “virtual.” All the telehealth-related technologies and tools are designed to offer care in a virtual manner. Implementing these health care systems might be challenging. However, the health care functions in the virtual care systems are more efficient, time-saving, and lesser expensive than that of the traditional healthcare systems.
In virtual care, patients receive well-organized care by using various platforms like text, video, email, and secure messaging. It can ensure improved care delivery, optimized workflows, staff productivity, and enhanced patient engagement, with lesser cost. Although these benefits make virtual care more meaningful in the mind of patients, there are some existing challenges too.
Access to broadband or availability of internet facility becomes an important challenge to provide virtual care for HCPs. Mainly in rural areas, this problem arises more. But as a remedy for this problem, healthcare organizations have started using a virtual care platform that can work on cellular and Wi-Fi connectivity. This will be a great advantage for the providers to deliver improved services to patients, especially if they are geographically isolated.
Another main concern that becomes a challenge to the virtual care system is the devices required for accessing the service; there is a need for one device or equipment for delivering care to the patient. Usually, organizations prefer smartphones, tablets, or computers for this purpose. Virtual care becomes more successful if the patient is familiar with the devices, but on the other hand, if the patient is not comfortable with the devices, it will be a burden for the service providers.
Integration of healthcare into an organization’s technological infrastructure becomes the next challenge. As a fresh concept, the virtual care technology should be well understood by the IT leaders, but the IT department may be concerned by some other projects or other investments that might not understand how effective and fruitful the virtual care benefits are.
As technology continues to expand, it is very important to make sure that healthcare systems harness it to boost opportunities in virtual patient care.