Insurance Technology Featured Article

Usage of Telemedicine to Increase in US, says Towers Watson

August 12, 2014

Telemedicine technology is catching up very fast all over the world, making use of IT to exchange medical data to deliver consultations, procedures, exams and monitoring services over vast geographic distances.

Particularly, this technology has been gaining much traction in the United States. Many health care organizations and numerous government agencies tout it as a way to reduce unnecessary hospital visits, offering specialized services to isolated, homebound or underserved populations.

Towers Watson, a global professional services company, after a detailed survey, has predicted that the use of telemedicine will drastically increase in the U.S.  Altogether, there will be 68 percent increase in the number of employers offering telemedicine by 2015.

This figure is expected to go up because of the lower costs of telemedicine technology, which is making way for insurance companies to back telemedicine, majorly cutting costs.

“While this analysis highlights a maximum potential savings, even a significantly lower level of use could generate hundreds of millions of dollars in savings,” said Dr. Allan Khoury, a senior consultant at Towers Watson. “Achieving this savings requires a shift in patient and physician mindsets, health plan willingness to integrate and reimburse such services, and regulatory support in all states.”

Towers Watson’s survey found that by 2015, 37 percent of employers expect to offer their employees telemedicine consultations as a low-cost alternative to emergency room or physician office visits for nonemergency health issues.

Presently, 22 percent of employers offer such telemedicine programs, a percentage expected to rise to 37 percent, a drastic increase. These percentages are built on Towers Watson’s 2014 ‘Health Care Changes Ahead Survey’ of U.S. employers with at least 1,000 employees.

Khoury further said that Telemedicine is just one piece of a broader telehealth spectrum that includes video, apps, kiosks, virtual visits, wearable devices and other advancements.




Edited by Adam Brandt

Article comments powered by Disqus

Related Insurance Technology Articles

DataPath Provider Payments Simplifies Reimbursements for Workers' Comp

For those in the claims processing industry, especially those who deal with workers' compensation ones, there is little doubt that managing provider payments can be challenging and costly. And, just like the application of automation technology is transforming all aspects of insurance business processes the payment of workers' comp is no exception. An illustration of this is the announcement from Little Rock, AR-based DataPath, who has launched an electronic provider payment solution precisely f… [ Read More ]
12/18/2014

Vlocity Insurance 2.0 Takes a Big Step in Omnichannel Insurance Service

The necessity of a multi-channel environment, even an omnichannel environment, is becoming increasingly clear at virtually every level and breed of sales. It's not enough to be parked at a desk waiting for a call, or making calls to potential customers on a cold-calling basis. Now, companies need to be ready regardless of the avenue customers may want to use, be it live chat, social media, or anything else. Vlocity, meanwhile, wants to help out on that front by releasing Vlocity Insurance 2.0, a… [ Read More ]
12/17/2014

Interactive Intelligence Honored as Great Place to Work

Interactive Intelligence honored with coveted Glassdoor Employees' Choice Award as one of U.S. best places to work. [ Read More ]
12/13/2014

Walgreens & MDLive Get Together for Telemedicine Push

It's well-known by now that telemedicine-the point where telecommunications and medicine coincide-has some significant potential to change the way we both seek and receive healthcare as we know it. But the specific developments within the field have proven to offer plenty of exciting conclusions and potential for expansion, and one new development comes from the combined efforts of Walgreens and MDLive, which will open up the telemedicine concept to Walgreens customers and connect same with doct… [ Read More ]
12/08/2014
FREE Insurance Technology enewslettter.

Events

Weekly Live Demo
Contact Center Solutions

Register Today!