How the Internet has Changed Healthcare: The Rise of Telehealth

A laptop of a 003767 provider with a patient chart pulled upWe’re back with the latest installment of our “How the Internet has changed the way we do things” blog posts, and the topic of telehealth seems particularly relevant during this time.

Over the past several weeks, we’ve all seen a major shift in the way we go about day-to-day tasks. We’re able to communicate via videoconference from the safety of our homes and work remotely without skipping a beat. During this time, technological advancements in the way we manage healthcare have become vitally important.

The Importance of Telehealth

Telehealth has been on the rise in recent years due to its ability to broaden access to healthcare resources in rural communities and to serve as a critical aspect of home-based care. It’s become particularly popular with aging populations, who would most often like to stay in their homes and communities as they grow older – a reality that telehealth helps make possible. With a connection to the Internet, healthcare providers are able to manage options like remote patient monitoring and interact with patients on mobile devices and through video technology.

Beyond offering alternatives for individuals who face barriers to seeing their doctor in person, telehealth makes it easy for medical providers to collaborate with each other. In rural communities that may have limited access to resources, this can mean the difference between having to send a patient farther away to a different hospital and being able to keep patients closer to home. While individual hospitals may not have the ability to employ specialists in every field of medicine, telehealth has opened doors to remote consultations and collaboration with hospitals that do have these resources.

These days, as more people are staying at home, there has been a further shift in the way we manage healthcare. Therapy appointments can be accomplished over video calls, and physicians are able to interact virtually with patients who may be unable to see them in person due to safety concerns. Reliable Internet access helps break down barriers to healthcare access that center around being able to physically attend an appointment, and we’ll be watching to see how telehealth continues to develop now that it’s become more mainstream for so many.

The Speed You Need

OTELCO has found that, as our customers shift their day-to-day tasks to virtual environments, their bandwidth needs have changed greatly. If you are unsure of your speed needs or are experiencing unusually slow load times, try reassessing your broadband needs with OTECLO’s free Bandwidth Calculator.

Download Our FREE Bandwidth Calculators For Home and Business