There’s no doubt about it: The healthcare industry is changing — rapidly. Of course, change can be a very good thing — especially in a field that relies on research and ingenuity to thrive. One of the latest and most prevalent developments in healthcare is telehealth, aka the use of telecommunications to deliver health-related services.

According to a 2018 survey from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, roughly 9 in 10 Americans said they would be comfortable receiving care via telemedicine. So, the opportunity to incorporate telehealth practices into your day-to-day operations is clearly there. Here are just a few reasons why telehealth can move your practice forward:

Fostering Access To Providers

Appointment schedules can fill up fast, and if a patient is told they have to wait months to see their provider in person, they might schedule an appointment elsewhere — or worse, simply not get the care they need. Telehealth cuts through a lot of the time-consuming aspects of a brick-and-mortar appointment and allows patients and providers to get right to what they need to do. This, in turn, allows providers to serve more patients in a day, and makes patients feel more connected to — and prioritized by — their providers.

shiftMD is a perfect example of this. The app allows providers to send non-prescription healthcare product recommendations straight to their patients’ phones — patients can then order their products and have them shipped directly to their homes. All of this can be done remotely. So, if a patient simply needs a product recommended to them, there’s no need for them to come into the office; their provider can simply send them the product recommendation via text. This then frees up the provider to have appointments with other patients who truly need to be seen in person.

Lowering Healthcare Costs For Patients, Bringing In Ancillary Income For Providers

Technology and healthcare may sound like two of the most expensive fields to be in, but when you combine them, they can pay off in a big way. In the above example, in which the patient doesn’t need to see their provider in person, they are saving on the cost of an appointment at that practice. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean the practice has to lose out on income. Telehealth services provide innovative avenues for practices to provide treatment that is both cost-effective to the patient while still being lucrative to the practice.

With shiftMD, providers can earn a percentage of the sale of every single product they recommend. And bonus: The products available through shiftMD are offered at the lowest possible price to patients (often lower than what they’re sold for at big-box drugstores) — meaning patients are saving money while providers are still able to profit.

Monitoring Patient Compliance For Improved Outcomes

This is a big one. With traditional patient care, once a patient has left the office, there’s not much a provider can do to ensure they’re following their care plan. Telehealth changes all of that. With HIPAA-compliant Telehealth software, providers and patients can conduct virtual follow-up appointments to further communicate about their conditions. And with shiftMD, providers can easily monitor whether their patient has ordered the products that were recommended to them. Instead of sending patients off with a product name written down on a piece of paper and hoping they actually drive to the pharmacy and purchase that exact product, providers can send the link to order the exact product they want their patients to take, and then check the shiftMD app to make sure they actually purchased it (and follow up with them if they did not)!

Communicating Wellness Information

Essentially every provider will agree: Patient communication is paramount to the success of their care plan. The more opportunities there are to communicate, the better. As stated above, telehealth fosters communication between providers and patients outside the office, providing more opportunities to share updates and clear up any confusion.

If you’ve ever gone to the store and then immediately forgot an item you went there to get, you know how frustrating that can be. With shiftMD, that problem is a non-issue, since patients get a text message with not only the name of the product, but also a link to directly order the product and have it shipped straight to them — no confusing trips to the pharmacy necessary.

Download the shiftMD app today and begin your journey into the world of digital wellness!