Free Telehealth Solution Can Relieve Rural Hospitals’ COVID-19 Financial Pressures
By David Dye, chief growth officer, CPSI.
Struggling rural hospitals face financial pain amidst the coronavirus outbreak. Revenue has been lost as elective procedures have been canceled since patients can’t safely visit in person for fear of being infected or spreading the disease. As a result, rural communities may lose access to critical care as the pandemic progresses.
Rural residents hurt
The financial and operational pressures on rural healthcare facilities can leave patients who are displaying COVID-19 symptoms or require ongoing care for chronic conditions with limited access to critical care, especially considering many rural residents live more than 30 miles away from the nearest hospital. Plus, rural populations are often more vulnerable to severe to serious outcomes with COVID-19. Compared to urban populations, rural Americans:
- Are older: More than 20% of the population in completely rural counties are ages 65+, according to U.S. census data, compared to around 15% in mostly urban centers.
- Have higher rates of: obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cigarette smoking
- Have increased mortality rates from: heart disease, cancer, lower respiratory disease, stroke, and unintentional injuries.
Technology must be used to solve the problem
Mobile, Alabama-based healthcare technology company CPSI understands the challenges facing rural hospitals and clinics, so the company is providing a free telehealth portal so doctors can continue to provide quality care.
While telehealth regulations were quickly changed amidst COVID-19, allowing providers to be reimbursed at $220 per remote appointment instead of at $13, telemedicine is not a reality for cash-strapped rural hospitals that:
- Lack the technological infrastructure and resources required to implement telemedicine
- Require a highly secure, HIPAA-compliant platform (Zoom, Skype, Microsoft Teams are not secure options)
- Need a platform that operates smoothly on low-bandwidth connectivity, common in rural areas
- Treat patients who don’t have computers or webcam capabilities
Rural hospitals need an affordable, secure, easy-to-use telehealth platform that can be set up in hours, not months, to give their patients quality care while allowing them to tap into a desperately needed revenue stream that could help them stay afloat. They need CPSI’s turnkey telehealth solution: Talk With Your Doc.
Solution: Free turnkey telehealth platform
Talk With Your Doc allows rural healthcare providers to treat patients during COVID-19 and maintain a lucrative revenue stream, with a secure, HIPAA-compliant portal that is easy to use, functions in low-bandwidth regions, and can be set up in hours. Best of all, health tech company CPSI is offering Talk With Your Doc free to doctors, clinics, hospitals and other health care providers worldwide for the rest of the year.
Talk With Your Doc was developed primarily by CPSI’s subsidiary, Get Real Health. Get Real Health’s core mission for 15+ years has been to develop patient engagement solutions — solutions that exist on your laptop or on your handheld device — to allow a patient to interact with their health record with their Apple watch or Fitbit and have all that information stored in one place, available to the patient and their family and the caregivers that provide care for those patients.
CPSI, throughout its 40 years, has been focused on serving hospitals in rural settings as well as nursing homes and physician offices with our electronic health records and our service solutions to be able to provide the same quality of care for the patients that they serve in those rural communities as they would receive in an urban setting.
Solution at a glance
Talk With Your Doc is a turnkey telehealth solution to help providers address the COVID-19 crisis while enabling virtual connections for other patients in need.
- No Cost for Patients or Providers: Talk With Your Doc is free for both patients and healthcare providers for 2020.
- Simple Set Up (Takes Hours, Not Days): Unlike other telehealth solutions on the market, Talk With Your Doc requires no integrations and can be easily set up within HOURS so doctors can start seeing patients remotely right away.
- Real-time Patient Monitoring (It’s More Than Just a Video Chat): This solution relieves the anxiety and stress of face-to-face medical visits for patients and doctors. But it offers so much more than remote appointments. Talk With Your Doc gives doctors a 360-degree view of their patient’s health to help them deliver better care. It acts as a monitoring tool, allowing doctors to receive alerts when patients update medical records, add data from medical devices, complete surveys, and more. Plus, it’s secure, EMR-agnostic and HIPAA-compliant.
- Generates Revenue for Doctors: Talk With Your Doc opens up a treatment and revenue stream for healthcare providers during the COVID-19 outbreak.