The value of integrating in-person and virtual care

The value of integrating in-person and virtual care

The retail industry with its e-commerce boom has lessons to teach healthcare, says an innovation leader at Teladoc Health.

Some health systems see a need to unify their virtual care capabilities across an integrated platform, telemedicine vendor Teladoc Health observes. Healthcare IT News interviewed Bruce Brandes, senior vice president of health system innovation at Teladoc Health, to talk about where telehealth is today, how in-person and virtual care integration may be the way to go, and what healthcare can learn from the retail industry. Today, health systems are elevating niche departmental decision making to prioritize an executive-level, enterprise strategy for virtual care. Health systems cannot deliver against these expectations without longitudinally integrating virtual care so that it is just seamlessly and invisibly always there. Most health systems employ different virtual care solutions from multiple vendors with disparate experiences and data across high-acuity care, outpatient care, primary care, chronic care, specialty care, mental healthcare, etc. This creates the opportunity for a new category of partnerships between health systems and enterprise virtual care companies to align operationally, clinically and financially. Further, for health systems seeking to move closer to first premium dollar through meaningful value-based care arrangements with payers and direct-to-employer contracts, successfully integrating virtual and in-person care will become a prerequisite to ensure success.

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