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3 Reasons to Consider Telemedicine

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We live in an instant-access, fast-paced world. If you order something online, you expect it to arrive on your doorstep the next day. Streaming services release an entire season of one show so you can choose to binge-watch in one weekend or watch an episode each week.

If we expect on-demand access to our favorite online stores and shows, why can’t we expect the same for our medical care?

The good news is that we can — thanks to telemedicine.

More employers are seeing the value of offering telemedicine in addition to their health benefits — not only to help reduce costs, but to help keep their employees healthy and productive. A Towers Watson survey predicts that 80% of employers will offer a telehealth benefit to their employees by 2018. Not only will employers see the value of telemedicine, employees will too. The number of patients using telemedicine will increase to 7 million in 2018, up from less than 350,000 in 2013.

(Related: 4 Reasons to Look, Hard, at Vision Coverage)

As the world continues to do business online, consider offering a telemedicine benefit to your clients to save them and their employees time and money.

Here are three reasons why telemedicine should be one of the solutions you offer clients.

1. It may mean more money in your customers’ pocket.

Telemedicine can help your customers cut down the cost of health care. In fact, telemedicine technology could potentially save U.S. employers up to $6 billion a year, according to Towers Watson. As telemedicine expands, so does the amount of health care professionals who offer virtual visits. The market value is expected to hit $36.2 billion by 2020, which is up from $14.3 billion in 2014, according to Jackson Healthcare’s Physician Trends 2016 report.

2. It could result in more productive employees

A sick employee may mean they’ll be out of the office — not only for a doctor appointment but they may need additional days at home. People often think they don’t have time or can afford to be sick, which may mean they put off a trip to the doctor. A minor illness could potentially worsen over time. The longer an employee waits for medical care, the amount of time spent out of the office could be longer than expected.

3. It may mean more virtual visits.

Access — day or night — to board-certified physicians on mobile devices or desktops is something employees can get behind. About 64% of patients say they would attend a doctor appointment via video telehealth, according to an American Well 2015 Telehealth Survey. And Jackson Healthcare found in 2016 that 57% of primary care physicians are open to the idea of conducting patient appointments virtually.

Employers know a strong benefits package is essential to keeping their employees happy and healthy and productive in the workplace.

Aligning yourself with the right benefits partner who offer services like telemedicine can help you stand out by adding value to your customers.

—Read 7 Important Florida Telehealth Discoveries on ThinkAdvisor.

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