Hospitals, specialty clinics, and other healthcare organizations are no longer leery of telemedicine and are in fact expanding to provide quality services and generate revenue. With this growth and success, there are many telemedicine options available for every organization. It is important to be aware of the factors that providers must consider to make telemedicine services successful for both the patients and the organization.
During the pandemic, telemedicine has enjoyed widescale adoption. One study suggests that among 39 percent of people who consulted a healthcare professional, two thirds of the patients used telemedicine and 84 percent of them used telemedicine for the first time. More than 55 percent of consumers reported a satisfactory experience while using telemedicine and stated they will most likely use it again. Healthcare professionals believe telemedicine usage will continue to increase.
A survey done by the Foley & Lardner Law Firm illustrates that telemedicine provides a great opportunity for practices and medical organizations to see a financial return.
Over 70 percent of respondents realized cost savings or ROI from their telemedicine services.
Nearly one third saw more than 20 percent savings.
Although many companies see a positive ROI, it is important to make sure that the telemedicine service provider chosen is right for them. There are a variety of options. Selecting the right telemedicine service or software will determine the level of success.
Type of Telemedicine: While people think of telemedicine as mostly doctors available remotely to patients, often a telephone triage nurse can resolve patient issues and provide a path to care. In fact, a triage nurse can resolve three-quarters of all patient calls. Triage nurses can determine which patients need further care or to see a physician, saving both time and money. Organizations can have a complete telehealth system with a triage nurse as the first line of care to further increase ROI.
Integrated: The telemedicine software should be able to integrate seamlessly with current workflows. To ensure that work is not doubled by adding a new technology to the mix, the telemedicine software needs to be cohesive and allow for easy data transfer.
Support: As with any technology, issues may arise. A successful telemedicine service should have training and support available to troubleshoot any concerns.
Adaptive: The healthcare industry is always evolving and transforming. Whether it is regulation, new discoveries, inventions, or patient expectations, the only way to be successful is to adapt. Telemedicine service and software should do the same. Look for a company that listens to their clients and makes upgrades to what they need.
Measure Success: The best way to determine the ROI of a telemedicine service is to establish a way to measure results. Choose a platform that includes different portals for clients to look at data and analyze it.
The telemedicine field has exploded and doesn’t seem to be stopping. Above are only a few factors to consider when implementing or expanding telemedicine services, but it is important to do the research to find which solution will be best for the organization.
Dr. Ravi Raheja is the medical director at TriageLogic, a leader in telehealth technology and services. Contact TriageLogic for a live demo.
As the COVID pandemic rapidly evolved, TriageLogic jumped into overdrive to help new and existing clients handle the coronavirus outbreak. They saw call volume skyrocket and knew that systems and software would need to be put into place for healthcare institutions to assist with the increased demand in a remote care environment.
TriageLogic software solutions, which use the gold-standard Schmitt-Thompson protocols, had COVID protocols included to provide the latest standard of care as CDC recommendations evolved. TriageLogic implemented the COVID protocols in their system and on their call center software client systems. They also quickly set-up additional hospitals with a nurse triage software platform to allow their nurses to work remotely and assist in the screening of COVID phone calls.
Using nurse triage protocols in conjunction with doctor e-visits improves coordination of care and allows doctors to safely delegate responsibility to their nurses. TriageLogic software has recommendations for nurses to transfer to doctor telehealth visits when applicable. The software also enables the nurses to text or email custom information sheets to patients when scheduling their e-visit, so the patients are informed about the process and how to connect with their doctor.
To help doctors evaluate triage protocols for their practices, TriageLogic is offering a free 30-day trial for the office triage software.
TriageLogic has been working with device companies to provide monitoring of dashboards and evaluation of patients with abnormal readings. They can provide coverage 24/7 or just after hours to supplement healthcare providers’ current remote patient monitoring programs.
TriageLogic staff observes these patient dashboards. When an alert comes in, the staff can contact the provider or send the message to TriageLogic nurses for further evaluation. The nurses will follow the practice’s instructions to triage the patients and get them the appropriate follow up. Remote patient monitoring improves health outcomes and increases revenue for practices.
While TriageLogic has grown and participated in plans to confront this major health event, they’ve taken a close look at their vision and where they see themselves in the future. Their use of protocols ensures that everyone, no matter their situation, gets the best care advice to address their medical symptoms. Holding onto this thought, they hope to continue providing top-notch care through COVID and beyond.
TriageLogic’s vision is simply this: “To provide a uniform, high-standard of care to everyone, everywhere.”
Remote patient monitoring is part of a new era of medical technology. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, remote services and technology have been extremely valuable to patients, doctors, and healthcare organizations. Remote patient care typically means helping patients over the phone. Remote patient monitoring (RPM) takes care one step further and helps doctors collect and evaluate data from patients who use an electronic medical device.
RPM is starting to gain traction by the medical field because it improves patient care. Many of these devices can capture data not observed by the patient. As a result, providers can monitor important vitals and intervene before a patient even presents a concerning symptom. This cuts down on both morbidity and mortality while saving costs and decreasing Emergency Room (ED) visits. A recent article in the Center for Technology and Aging asserts that the healthcare industry “could reduce its costs by nearly 200 billion dollars during the next twenty-five years if remote monitoring tools were used routinely in cases of congestive heart failure, diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and chronic wounds or skin ulcers.”
There are many questions for providers and hospitals to ask themselves as innovative technology continues to become available. Technology is an investment, and changes to existing systems require effort. Is remote patient monitoring worth it, and will it soon be the standard of care for chronically ill patients? What are some requirements to consider while setting up an RPM program?
Which Patients Benefit Most from RPM?
According to the CDC, six in ten Americans have a chronic condition such as heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes. Four in ten have two or more chronic conditions. These chronic patients help make up more than eighty five percent of the 3.5 trillion dollars in healthcare costs across the nation annually and are responsible for eighty percent of all hospital admissions. It costs 3.5 times more money to treat chronically ill patients than those without these conditions, and they make up many of the leading causes of death in Americans.
RPM is especially effective for these types of patients. Continuous management of chronic conditions is burdensome in traditional office or clinic settings. Patients bring in notebooks or phone apps filled with notes, self-assessments, and symptoms. The onus is on the patient, and the reliability of that data falls into the hands of individuals, which can result in inconsistent or partially inaccurate information. RPM takes this burden from patients and relies on accurate, consistent technology. It also allows providers to measure additional important vitals and to receive the information daily.
Chronic health patients have been on the rise. We need solutions to help treat these patients in an effective and economical way. RPM addresses these needs.
How RPM Helps Manage Chronic Care Costs
A study published by the National institute of Health in 2016 by doctors Usha Sambamoorthi, Xi Tan, and Arijita Deb states that “The presence of MCC [multiple chronic conditions] has profound healthcare utilization and cost implications for public and private insurance payers, individuals, and families.”
These conditions require detailed, comprehensive care that can prove challenging. RPM allows for nurses and doctors to have access to health information of a patient in real time, and makes it possible for clinicians to issue health orders that can curb unnecessary emergency department visits by reacting to changes seen from a patient’s monitoring device.
It also gives doctors more access to their patients and creates opportunity for early education in patient behavior and an overview of patient participation in their treatment plan. Doctors can get a look into a patient’s activity and use nurses for check-ins to encourage the patient to comply with health orders. It gives doctors the power to give quality care outside of clinical settings and increases health outcomes. RPM gives doctors the information they need on a timely basis, which allows for swift intervention for high-risk patients.
Benefits to Providers
One concern for doctors when implementing RPM is the possibility of an increased workload, with doctors having to monitor patients regularly even when the patient is not receiving direct care. Doctor burnout is common, and its alleviation has its own value. An Ernst and Young’s 2018 survey on digital health showed that almost sixty five percent of physicians believe that “technology that captures consumer-generated data will reduce the burden on doctors and nurses specifically.”
However, there are solutions for providers to cut down on their work while providing better patient care through RPM. First, most monitoring devices have their technology programmed to inform the provider when there are anomalies or potential patient problems. Second, doctors can also use an outside remote nurse service to monitor the data coming from the devices. An efficient RPM company who provides this service can improve patient care while decreasing the workload on the physicians.
Industry Willingness to Implement RPM
According to a Spyglass Consulting Group report in 2019, at least 88 percent of healthcare organizations have an interest in investing in some form of remote patient monitoring technology to pivot to value-based care. Eighty-nine percent of practices surveyed in Spyglass’s report say that they are actively drafting strategies to get patients to take an active, continuous role in managing their chronic health issues. RPM as a prong to this strategy gives a continuous link between patient and doctor, and it supports these kinds of initiatives.
Health insurance companies have shown an interest as well. In 2019 the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services proposed several amendments designed to increase remote patient monitoring programs by improving reimbursements. Some of these amendments include reimbursements for RPM setup and patient education, which is a big incentive to providers who are thinking of implementing this technology. Revisions to who may monitor these devices have also occurred. This allows registered nurses (RNs) or medical assistants to do the bulk of the monitoring, freeing up physicians and nurse practitioners.
Remote patient monitoring offers a way for practices, hospitals, and health insurance companies to lower their costs, deliver continuous quality care, and alleviate doctor workloads. As we move forward, the value of remote patient monitoring will continue to evolve for healthcare organizations and implemented into care plans for the chronically ill.
TriageLogic® announces a free thirty-day trial of their telephone triage software, MyTriageChecklistTM, for medical organizations. This software is web-based, and it includes triage protocols developed by Dr. Schmitt and Dr. Thompson for pediatric and adult patients respectively. The software ensures that nurses triage patients safely and document the call when speaking to them on the phone.
For the first time, TriageLogic is giving organizations thirty free days to use the software and experience its benefits, which include saving time, ensuring appropriate patient care advice and documentation, and increasing patient and nurse satisfaction. The software allows doctors to know their patients are receiving the most appropriate disposition every time they call. TriageLogic also includes free training by its experienced call center nurse manager, Rose Moon, RN.
Once organizations sign up for a free trial, they have instant access to the software. It’s created to be user-friendly, and TriageLogic provides additional resources to make it easy for nurses to learn the software and tips on how to select the right protocols. This includes free live training, as well as courses on telephone nurse triage in the free learning center.
MyTriageChecklist is an easy to use, secure, effective solution that can help your practice adapt to major health events, such as COVID-19. Sign up for their free thirty-day trial or contact them for more information.
Adapting to the Demands of Healthcare with High-quality Solutions for Nurse Triage and Remote Patient Care
In 2006 by Charu Raheja, Ph.D., founded TriageLogic with the purpose of using modern nurse telehealth technology and medical expertise to improve access to healthcare. Their goal is to ensure everyone receives the same standard of care regardless of where they live. Ravi Raheja, MD, serves as the medical director and COO, overseeing all nursing and technology operations in the company to ensure patients receive the highest level of care.
Over the last thirteen years,
TriageLogic has stayed true to its mission and continues to provide innovative
nurse telehealth technology and mobile applications. TriageLogic also operates
one of the largest URAC-accredited healthcare call centers in the United
States. As healthcare has evolved, TriageLogic has continued to adapt and
release new product lines to meet the changing needs of the industry.
The year 2020 has challenged our
healthcare system, causing many medical professionals to work around the clock
to implement emergency remote support solutions for patients. TriageLogic has
been proud to assist with the COVID-19 pandemic by quickly adapting and
creating easy-to-implement solutions for hospitals, medical organizations, and
health centers to use for patient care during the COVID-19 crisis.
The following lists some of the
solutions available for clients:
Nurse Triage On Call
TriageLogic maintains one of the
most sophisticated URAC accredited nurse triage systems in the United States.
Their call center software allows clients to customize orders after nurses
evaluate the symptoms presented by patients. Nurses can share handouts with
patients on behalf of doctors, and MDs can communicate securely with nurses
using HIPAA-compliant texting. The company quickly ramped up its services and
software implementation as it observed a call volume increase by as much as 35
percent due to COVID-19.
Customized Coronavirus-Trained Hotline and Patient Triage
These hotlines include a
combination of online systems and a remote call center telephony with triage
protocols. By partnering with physicians, TriageLogic helps millions of
concerned callers, evaluate their symptoms, and coordinate testing for
thousands of patients.
Remote Call Center with a Phone System for Doctors and Nurses
TriageLogic can set up nurses and
doctors to work remotely, including connecting all staff to a call
center-grade, HIPAA-compliant phone system. This system allows organizations to
keep their clinical staff at home and coordinate as a team as if they were in
the office. From front
desk staff to nurses and doctors, the entire team stays together while working
remotely, including scheduling visits and conducting telehealth visits. Using
secure phone lines keeps patient information confidential.
Nurse Triage Software with Up-To-Date Protocols
MyTriageChecklist is a fast-to-train, web-enabled software from TriageLogic that provides continuity in patient care and education. It takes less than an hour to implement, does not store any sensitive patient information, and offers an easy-to-use interface to ensure nurses ask and consistently document all relevant questions related to patient symptoms.
It also includes triage protocols written by Dr. Schmitt and Dr. Thompson, which are updated in real-time. For example, COVID-19 protocols receive regular updates as information becomes available.
Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM)
As monitoring technologies continue
to gain traction, the healthcare industry views RPM as a way to help control
the cost of care for those with chronic diseases such as congestive heart
failure, COPD, asthma, and diabetes.
However, the amount of data that’s
generated by monitoring technologies is vast. TriageLogic has partnered with
several device companies to create a full end-to-end monitoring system. The
system makes it easy for doctors to monitor their chronically ill patients
without adding administrative or clinical burden to their staff. TriageLogic
can also create specific protocols for nurses to use based on devices and
Finally, all TriageLogic solutions
come with a robust reporting portal to provide in-depth analytics on the
outcomes from patient interaction. TriageLogic aims to stay ahead of the
demands of healthcare and create ready-made and easy to implement solutions to
continue helping providers give the best possible care to their patients.
TriageLogic is a URAC accredited, physician-led provider of high-quality telehealth services, nurse triage, triage education, and software for telephone medicine. Their comprehensive triage solution includes integrated mobile access and two-way video capability. The TriageLogic group serves over 7,000 physicians and covers over 18 million lives nationwide.
To address Coronavirus concerns, Doctors Schmitt and Thompson have updated their Clinical Content protocols. The coronavirus protocols include appropriate questions to screen patients who may be at risk as well as dispositions based on symptoms and exposure. The protocols also contain pertinent information from a public health reporting perspective to help prevent the spread of the virus.
Coronavirus is a respiratory disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus, first detected in China, has now been diagnosed throughout most of the world. The virus is named SARS-CoV-2, and the disease it causes has been named coronavirus disease 2019, abbreviated COVID-19. On January 30, 2020, the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee of the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a public health emergency of international concern.
At this time, there is no vaccine to protect against COVID-19 and no medications approved to treat it. According to the CDC, nonpharmaceutical interventions are the most important response strategy. As the virus outbreak continues to evolve, TriageLogic will provide its clients with the latest information to allow for the best-possible patient care.
TriageLogic announced easy-to-implement solutions that hospitals, medical organizations, and health centers can use for patient care during the COVID-19 crisis. As the healthcare sector adapts to the coronavirus pandemic, many medical professionals work around the clock to implement emergency support solutions for patients who present worrying symptoms, as well as those who need help understanding the guidelines for care.
The following solutions have minimal implementation time requirements:
A Coronavirus-trained hotline is available 24/7 to screen patient questions, provide information, and follow scripts on behalf of specific practices and medical groups. With a significant increase in patient calls, the ability to discern which ones require additional medical attention and which are only seeking advice is paramount to a functional office staff.
Nurse triage software with Covid-19 protocols, through MyTriageChecklist, is a fast-to-train, web-enabled software that provides continuity in patient care and education. It takes less than an hour to implement, does not store any sensitive patient information, and offers an easy-to-use interface to ensure nurses consistently ask and document all relevant questions related to patient symptoms.
Remote call center with phone system can enable your certified nurses to work at any location connected to a call center-grade, HIPAA-compliant phone system. This allows an organization to keep their clinical staff at home and coordinate as a team to remotely evaluate patients.
“We are working around the clock to help our current clients as well as other health centers put processes in place to help patients and concerned callers. We are also working with remote monitoring companies to have a process in place to help patients at risk, or after a hospitalization at their homes,” said TriageLogic’s Ravi Raheja, MD.
TriageLogic offers easy to implement solutions for healthcare organizations to address the COVID-19 crisis. This includes setting up information hotlines, giving nurses the tools to evaluate patients over the phone, and helping set up remote call center phone systems. Visit www.triagelogic.com for more information or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
TriageLogic announced a quick-to-deploy and easy-to-use telehealth system with a virtual call center that hospitals, medical organizations, and health centers can use for patient care during the COVID-19 crisis.
As health organizations adapt to the coronavirus pandemic, they look for a system they can deploy quickly for staff and nurses to work remotely to set up doctor visits, answer patient questions, evaluate their symptoms, and determine who needs further evaluation by a doctor. Team members can communicate with their physicians and set up two-way video visits using secure, HIPAA-compliant texting options that do not require the use of a mobile app. This allows the remote hospital associates to set up and coordinate telehealth visits for doctors instead of in-person visits.
Nurses can also be included in the solution by having COVID-19 and other medical protocols available in a web-based system. The information from the phone call can be exported to the hospital’s EMR system or be integrated with Salesforce.
Coordination of telemedicine visits between non-clinical, nurses, and doctors in client EMR
TriageLogic assists in recommending efficient workflow and implementation of two-way video visits
Additional solutions such as a fully staffed COVID-19 hotline and remote patient monitoring are also available. “TriageLogic was able to set up a telehealth system within a couple of days for our nurses and doctors to work remotely and continue their medical visits,” said Melinda, director of PPM business operations for a large children’s hospital.
The Covid-19 pandemic continues to change nearly all parts of our lives and businesses. As a result of this national emergency, medical professionals, hospitals, and organizations are working around the clock to implement emergency support solutions for patients presenting worrying symptoms as well as those who need help understanding the guidelines for care.
This article focuses on emergency solutions that providers can implement quickly in this time of crisis.
Set-up a Virtual Doctor Office
We understand that virtual visits are going to be necessary to save time and decrease in-person patient contact. However, medical practices must consider how to create a system that allows medical visits to continue as if they were in the office.
Here are some things to consider:
Doctors can evaluate patients over the phone and prescribe. Many practices already have the technology to see patients virtually, and there are several platforms available that healthcare providers, who do not yet have the technology, can implement quickly. When selecting a technology, choose a vendor that can provide HIPAA-safe calls, record information as needed, and make it easy to access without a mobile application.
Nurses play a vital role in helping contain the epidemic and alleviate the calls that go to the doctors. Nurses need to use triage protocols (including COVID-19 protocols) to evaluate and determine which patients require a consultation with a doctor. The protocols experience regular updates, written by doctors, as the latest information becomes available. These protocols are available for free from TriageLogic.
Look for a company that can quickly implement a virtual office that allows front desk, nurses, and doctors to continue working and operating remotely as if they were in an office. Vendors that have a record of working with doctors can implement these solutions quickly and affordably.
Ravi K. Raheja, MD is the COO and medical director of the TriageLogic Group. Founded in 2005, TriageLogic is a URAC accredited, physician-led provider of high-quality telehealth services, nurse triage, triage education, and software for telephone medicine. Their comprehensive triage solution includes integrated mobile access and two-way video capability. For more information visit www.triagelogic.com and www.continuwell.com or email email@example.com