TELEHEALTH Impact Study: Physician Survey
Telehealth use, which surged during the COVID-19 pandemic, has provided a way for physicians to provide care while keeping patients safe in their homes. These services also protected healthcare staff and safeguarded resources such as personal protective equipment (PPE). To explore clinicians’ experiences with telehealth, the COVID-19 Healthcare Coalition recently conducted a survey of 1,594 physicians and other qualified healthcare professionals across the country. The findings of the Telehealth Impact Study highlight the wide expansion of telehealth services in many specialty areas, high levels of satisfaction with the services, and a look at barriers that could affect the continued use and improvement of these services.
More than 75% of clinicians responding to the survey indicated that telehealth enabled them to provide quality care in the areas of COVID-19-related care, acute care, chronic disease management, hospital follow-up, care coordination, preventative care, and mental/behavioral health. Additionally, 60% of clinicians reported that telehealth has improved the health of their patients.
- Of those using telehealth, 80% are conducting live, interactive video visits with patients and 67.9% are doing audio-only visits.
- 68% of respondents are motivated (agree and strongly agree) to increase telehealth use in their practices. The majority would like to continue to offer telehealth for chronic disease management, medical management, care coordination, and preventative care following the pandemic.
- 11% of respondents said they were using remote patient monitoring technologies with patients in their homes; the commonly used tools include smartphones (camera), blood pressure cuffs, body weight scales, and pulse oximeters. Currently, data is usually shared verbally over the phone or via email.
More than 80% of respondents indicated that telehealth improved the timeliness of care for their patients. A similar percentage said that their patients have reacted favorably to using telehealth for care.
Respondents indicated that telehealth decreased the costs of care for their patients (61% either agreeing or strongly agreeing) and improved the financial health of their practices (56% either agreeing or strongly agreeing).
A majority of respondents indicated that telehealth has improved the satisfaction of their work (55%)