A health care delivery model that empowers a healthcare provider with access to live data and real-time suggestions to better treat patients is known as a virtual health platform. Chronic conditions often compound the difficulty of patients to go to frequent medical appointments, undergo routine clinical tests, and maintain complicated medication regimens.
In an emerging survey of a large population of elderly patients in five cities across the United States, 38 percent of all in-site acute care appointments were found to be amenable to a virtual health platform. Of those surveyed, a full quarter had undergone some type of technology-driven intervention to improve their health, and another quarter was on the verge of doing so.
One reason that such a large percentage of patients seem willing to embrace a virtual health platform is that they are overloaded with information. They are bombarded by phone calls, texts, e-mails, online information, text messages, and other forms of informational stimuli. It becomes difficult for patients to sift through all of the information to make informed decisions about their healthcare. A system that allows a patient’s healthcare provider to instantly access key information without requiring the patient to do so will allow them to manage their health more effectively.
Another reason that patients are receptive to a virtual platform is that they can visit a variety of websites hosted by providers, rather than being limited to one or two in traditional inpatient clinics. The WellStar system offered by Wellpoint is just one example of this. Providers can customize the website to feature a variety of ailments, symptoms, as well as treatments and conditions. By visiting a website hosted by a Wellstar provider, patients can access diagnostic information as well as personalized treatment plans tailored to their specific needs.
A key advantage to the platform offered by Wellpoint is its ability to use real-time data from a variety of sources to support a patient’s health strategy. The system uses information such as demographics and location to determine what patient visits are more likely to yield desired results. This allows a provider to prioritize its patients, which may help reduce the amount of time devoted to each patient and increase the overall efficiency of the office’s care. In addition to prioritizing visits, the platform also identifies optimal levels of care for individual patients, which will allow the provider to offer a higher level of treatment than it normally would.
By offering virtual visits, patients can also reduce the amount of time spent going into and coming out of the doctor’s office. Time spent going into and exiting the office has been found to affect a patient’s level of comfort with their physician and office. When patients can schedule their appointments, they are less likely to dread making their appointments and taking them. The Wellpoint Health Platform allows patients to schedule up to five times as many virtual visits as they would typically have.
Telemedicine and virtual health are not the first two words that might come to mind when discussing patient care, but with the Wellpoint pandemic response team, these concepts are quickly becoming a norm. Utilizing a single platform, which is used by multiple providers, ensures that a patient’s care is tracked efficiently.