Health care has always been a top priority for every nation because citizens being in good health means there is enough workforce to drive the economy upward. In every campaign manifesto, the campaigners always touch on healthcare with ways to improve the systems in place, showing how big of a priority it is. Poor health facilities mean no labor to drive the economy forward since everyone will be falling sick. A decline in the economy results in higher standards of living, making it impossible for those living below the poverty level to fend for themselves, resulting in increased cases of mugging, robbery, theft. It is important to have hospitals equipped with the necessary facilities to administer proper health care effectively.
One way through which technology has helped in having a one-on-one connection with a specialist is via Telehealth facilities. Telehealth is basically defined as the use of electronic communications and software to monitor while treating patients in place of an in-patient visit. This service has made it possible for us to avoid hospitals since they tend to be crowded sometimes, and anyone can easily catch a disease there while going to be treated for something else. It has eliminated the necessity of lining up to see a specialist, but with a good internet connection, a mobile phone, or a laptop, you can quickly talk to your doctor whenever, wherever you may be.
This has caused a ripple effect in terms of time conservation by the masses. Instead of making trips to the hospitals and waiting in long queues to see a doctor, you may easily connect to the doctor while still going about your daily activities. This increases the efficiency of the workforce, in that once talking to the doctor over the phone, you can simply walk down to the chemist and buy the prescribed medicine on your way home. Even those who are bedridden are saved by this advanced technology, whereby they can save their energy to do other small things in the house and getting the rest they require while still having a specialist a call away.
Telehealth has brought in the aspect of easily consulting other experts on an opinion, just to see their view on it and what necessary steps should be taken. Instead of chattering planes to go and consult experts in India or the US, technology has made that connection simpler, enabling you to save thousands of dollars on transport. They can also share their opinions with local doctors who will learn from them and apply where necessary. It is only in cases where surgery with advanced equipment is required that will prompt the patient to be on the next flight there.
In a way, these services have also helped protect our doctors. They risk their lives every day to treat the sick, coming into contact with certain communicable diseases, which makes them vulnerable to exposure to some illness. With Telehealth services, doctors and patients can now effectively converse while keeping their distance, protecting both the doctor with his patient. They could both be speaking from their respective homes, a safe environment for both parties.
Statistics show the Telehealth service revenue has grown by 34% from 2014 to 2019. The market size in 2019 was estimated to be around 45 billion dollars and is expected to grow to 75 billion dollars by 2026. Despite the industry showing such good revenue figures, these services are slowly growing, warming unto people’s hearts. We know humans take time to change, adapt to the new norm of doing things, but slowly they learn to accept the changes, and move forward. There may be areas where such amenities cannot be accessed, like the remote areas, but with ever-growing technology, people living in such areas will have the luxury of accessing the amenities too.
As much as doctors and patients for a long time have used the conventional way of using appointments to see each other, different countries are working every day to improve their Telehealth reach. This enables such consultations to be more effective and is done by spreading the reach of network providers for everyone to access the telehealth services. As per current statistics, the projection of Telehealth services is only going up.