Top 10 Tips: Barriers to Telemedicine

Top 10 Tips: Barriers to Telemedicine

Telemedicine, as is seen in discussions over at bellaireer.com, comes with many benefits, including great convenience effectiveness. You would think that all these benefits are enough to see telemedicine really take off and be implemented nationwide, however, several barriers are standing in the way of telemedicine, preventing this from happening. With the help of the subject matter experts over at bellaireer.com, this article will look to shine a spotlight on these barriers through the following 10 tips.

Reimbursement

One of the biggest barriers to telemedicine, as per the folks over at bellaireer.com, is reimbursement. This is brought about by the fact that reimbursement models vary across the country, from one state to another as discussed over at bellaireer.com. Practitioners also have to meet certain criteria to be reimbursed for their telemedicine services. Limited reimbursement has played a key role in holding telemedicine back, and is without a doubt a key barrier.

Licensing

In theory, telemedicine is supposed to help break geographical barriers as discussed over at bellaireer.com. However, in practice, physicians are faced with several challenges when looking to practice telemedicine in another state, particularly given regulations vary from one state to the next as covered over at bellaireer.com. On top of keeping up with these varying regulations, sometimes physicians looking to practice across state lines have to pay exorbitant fees for licensing. All these issues as far as physician licensing is concerned have served as a barrier to telemedicine.

Telemedicine credentialing

Credentialing is without a doubt another major barrier to telemedicine as not only is time-consuming due to the sheer volume of paperwork involved, as explained over at bellaireer.com, it also comes with very high administrative processing costs. An example is as seen in hospitals that work from a hub and spoke model, where physician specialists at each of the hospitals in the system must have telemedicine credentials at all the other hospitals rather than the one which they are posted at.

Costs to implement

The costs associated with the implementation of telemedicine programs are yet another major barrier to telemedicine, as per the gurus over at bellaireer.com. These costs include the purchase of requisite equipment and software technology, training of the physicians, and staff among many others. These costs can prove insurmountable for smaller practices, who may find it difficult to implement telemedicine programs even if they want to.

Data vulnerability

As can be seen in discussions over at bellaireer.com, there has been a spike in cases of security breaches in the healthcare sector. With this as a backdrop, another barrier to telemedicine is the fact that many consider telemedicine as an additional layer of a potential threat as far as patient data exposure is concerned. Many fear that their patient data may be vulnerable to attack by hackers, in what is without doubt one of the biggest barriers to telemedicine.

Telemedicine fraud

In what is yet another barrier to telemedicine, there are several folks out there who fear that they could be defrauded when seeking medical care through telemedicine. As is revealed in discussions on the same over at bellaireer.com, this is mostly the case when dealing with referrals, with many fearing that one may be referred to specialists and services they don’t need just for the money. This is why telemedicine is governed by strict regulations and laws, with practitioners being encouraged to ensure that they remain up-to-date with all these regulations.

Evidence

While there are certain applications of telemedicine that require no evidence to show that they doing well and show great progress, there are other applications that lack evidence to back them up, according to the gurus over at bellaireer.com. Many companies and organizations are still holding out on implementing telemedicine as they are waiting on the results of studies currently being run on the same so that they can be convinced of the merits of the same.

Cases of malpractice

Although there have been only a few cases of telemedicine malpractice, discussed over at bellaireer.com, they have been enough to provide a barrier as far as the penetration of telemedicine is concerned. Teleradiology is an area that has been hit hard by cases of malpractice as far as telemedicine is concerned, and it is something that should be curbed going forward if telemedicine is to go to the next level.

Connectivity

Another barrier to telemedicine, is the issue of technology and in particular connectivity, as tackled over at bellaireer.com. While the levels of broadband connectivity have gone up in the last couple of years, there remain gaps in the rural areas where issues to access broadband remain a major thorn in the flesh. The issue of connectivity as well as access to the technology required for telemedicine such as access to smartphones, tablets, and computers remains a barrier to telemedicine.

Awareness and trust in telemedicine

There remains a substantial number of patients who are reluctant to engage virtually with practitioners through telemedicine, in what is yet another barrier worth mentioning. Such people, as covered over at bellaireer.com, remain skeptical and don’t fully understand what telemedicine is about and therefore they lack trust in virtual care. It is up to healthcare organizations and practitioners to cultivate trust by educating them on telemedicine, addressing any concerns they may have, and highlighting what to expect during visits.

The above are some of the barriers to telemedicine, which we expect will be overcome with time with growth in technology and trust levels among the parties involved. As always, you can uncover more on this and other related topics by visiting the brilliant bellaireer.com.