Rancor over how—or even whether—to replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA, or “Obamacare”) doesn’t stop everyday people from needing good, immediate care they can afford. Urgent care often fits the bill, but even that may not be convenient enough for some patients; a new study from the Health Resources and Services Association (HRSA) shows that 20% of Americans live in rural areas—where only 11% of physicians practice. In such situations, telemedicine could be the best available option. Occupational medicine providers are finding employers eager to try anything that will minimize the time workers are away from their jobs, and insurers are starting to see the benefits, as well. With urgent care already being a dynamic, forward-thinking industry there could be a prime opportunity in establishing a telemedicine component to your practice. JUCM has covered this topic extensively. For a good introduction to the benefits of telemedicine to an urgent care center, check out Using Telemedicine to Improve Throughput and Build Market Share (or any of the relevant entries in the JUCM archives).
Confusion and Delay Over Healthcare Bill Present an Opportunity for Telemedicine