Telemedicine has increased accessed to healthcare for communities and people who normally wouldn’t receive the attention they need. In recent data it has been indicated that 84% of US households own a computer and 73% have a computer with a broadband internet connection. The vast majority of Americans – 95% – now own a cellphone of some kind. The share of Americans that own smartphones is now 77%.
This access not only allows people to speak with a doctor but also removes the expenses of traveling to a hospital. This is a great benefit for people in rural communities, where the nearest medical center can be 20-plus miles away, and for those who cannot, or are unable, to use public transportation.
Millennials—who statistically require less intensive medical care and traditionally opt for high-deductible health plans—also have an opportunity to save money using telemedicine. According to a study conducted by Red Quill Consulting Inc., the average cost of a virtual visit is $40 to $50, while in-person care can cost as much as $176 per visit.
Telemedicine is also convenient for younger Americans who plan on moving to a new city or frequently travel. You can use telemedicine platforms right from your mobile device. Many PCPs require a one-time, in-person physical examination for new patients. After the initial physical, they can easily communicate with their patients via e-mail and virtually diagnose and prescribe medication for common ailments such as a cold or rash.
Now you can see your physician while you are in your pajamas, at your office desk at work or wherever life takes you.
Welcome to the new world of telemedicine. No more waiting rooms for you and me.