A recent study from Canada Health Infoway adds to the mounting evidence that telemedicine, specifically virtual visits and consults via video conferencing actually offer value to both the patient and the provider.
Infoway, a Canadian federal non-profit whose mission it is to advance mobile health, worked with researchers from the University of British Columbia to conduct surveys and interviews with clinicians and patients participating in virtual visits.
Lead author of the study Kimberlyn McGrail stated:
“The patient survey results clearly show that virtual visits can be a way to offer patient-centered care. Whether we realize that potential depends critically on how these services are integrated into existing care delivery.”
They found that virtual visits increased access to care for patients with most saving travel time and avoiding work absence. Many may have reservation about online security, but 91 percent of participants of the study said that they were confident their information was secure. And 57 % stated that they avoided a physical trip to the doctor altogether.
iMedicalApps has covered other recent studies that support these findings, like one that showed e-consults improved access to infectious disease care and high satisfaction ratings in pediatric care.
While the study comes from Canada where access to care in remote parts of the country is a problem, access to care even in urban areas around the world is a problem and a good reason for more investment in telemedicine.