Arizona Telemedicine Blog Book - Page 19

The Insurance Hurdle Market researcher Irwin says the average telemedical visit costs between $40 and $50. My visits were in that range and I consider the convenience and prompt service well worth the price. I assumed that my insurance wouldn’t pay for the visit, and, like me, more than half of the patients surveyed (56%) didn’t know if their health insurance covers visits conducted using telemedicine. Arizona’s telemedicine parity law is “partial”—it covers only a few healthcare services and primary care, unfortunately, is not among them. We need to get telemedicine parity to the point where patients don’t have to wonder if they’re covered when they choose to see a doctor via telemedicine—because, according to the survey, studies suggest that the number of patients taking advantage of telemedicine will increase twentyfold over the five year period from 2013 (350,000 users) to 2018 (7 million users). The Number One Concern Patients in the survey also were asked to cite their top concerns about their most recent telemedicine visit. The numberone concern was “missing in-person interaction” (21%) with many pointing out that the visit was “colder” or “less personal” than an ordinary, in-person visit. I personally didn’t feel that way, but that could be because I am very used to using videoconferencing to interact with others— and also, the provider I met with had a great “screen presence,” making me feel right at home. Check out the full “Patient Interest in Adopting Telemedicine” survey to read more and see all the results. A recent survey found that only 16 percent of patients would prefer to seek care for a minor ailment at an emergency room if they also had access to telemedical services. 19