Study shows telehealth increases new healthcare users

Rand Corp has published the results of an analysis of telehealth consultations. “We analyzed claims data for a large California agency serving public employees that recently offered Teladoc as a covered service.” says the summary from Rand. “The 3,701 Teladoc ‘visits’ we studied were for a broad range of diagnostic categories, the most common of which were acute respiratory conditions, urinary tract infections, and skin problems. Compared to patients who visited a physician’s office for a similar condition, adult Teladoc users were younger and less likely to have used health care before the introduction of Teladoc. Patients who used Teladoc were less likely to have a follow-up visit to any setting, compared to those patients who visited a physician’s office or emergency department. Teladoc appears to be expanding access to patients who are not connected to other providers.”

The results have been published in the February issue of Health Affairs.

Rand Press release Analysis of Teladoc Use Seems to Indicate Expanded Access to Care for Patients Without Prior Connection to a Provider. See also Health Affairs article.

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