Since the Congressional Telemedicine Study of 20071 and repeated in 20162, software developers have been creating software platforms to allow healthcare providers through all fields of medical specialization to provide remote care to their patients, all to varying degrees of success.
The most successful platforms share many common traits, the first being that the software is indeed a “platform.” By platform, we mean a single, self-container software application allowing the provider to give a complete consultative healthcare experience from patient intake through prescription (or not) to the communication of the medical record to the provider’s respective Electronic Medical Record (EMR), as well as any medical referral or specialist recommendation. In many cases, the patient themselves or a family member or guardian may well request a copy of the consultation record in electronic or printed form, at times sent to an electronic Personal Health Record (PHR). That said, the industry’s attempts at a universal PHR over the past 15 years are still waiting to catch traction. The Big Ones have had their try at it – Google with Google Health and Microsoft with Health Vault. So far, the patients simply have not expressed a great desire or need for maintaining and keeping their own aggregated health record.
Coming back to our subject of what features are needed to provide both provider and patient a seamless and successful remote telehealth consultation, below please find what we at OnCall.MD consider to be the Top-10 features required for making a Telehealth platform, consultation and experience a success for you and your patient:
Multiple Provider Pricing Options (free, per consultation, per month, etc.)
Integrated payment gateway, no 3rd-party payment gateway options required.
ePrescription an integral and embedded component of the platform
a. To include direct access for provider to patient’s actual nationwide prescriptive history
Consultation allowed by phone, Video, email and HIPAA-compliant text
Export of all patient records to any EMR, other back-office software applications, or PHR, including platform-provided option (USB drive, etc.)
Ability for multiple providers or extenders to consult or manage a single patient’s remote consultation (insurance verification, follow-up, etc.)
2, 3 & 4-way Consultations for additional providers, parents and guardians
Able to be personalized for Provider
Integration to / API’s for 3rd party, USB or Bluetooth biometric devices (thermometers, scales, blood pressure cuffs, etc.)
1 National Center for Policy Analysis, Convenient Care and Telemedicine, Devon Herrick, 2007.
2 REPORT TO CONGRESS, E-health and Telemedicine, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2016
This list of “must-have” or “should have” features was designed so that you, the provider, can offer your patient the utmost professional, safe and state-of-the-art technology. At OnCall.MD, we drive the digital transformation of the healthcare industry forward, but the focus on the human factor remains. We strive to make you the best provider you can be with the latest technologies to assist you in bettering your patients, their outcomes and their health.