COVID-19 dropped like a bomb and radically shifted the landscape of our daily lives. While some of these changes have shifted back to their pre-pandemic norms, many of the changes in the healthcare industry seem to be sticking around.
From digital consultations to greater interest in medical patient portals, here are the ways the pandemic and quarantine have permanently changed American healthcare.
How the Pandemic Has Changed Healthcare
The Telemedicine Boom
When looking at the pandemic and healthcare, perhaps the most significant and lasting change is interest in telemedicine. Telehealth is nothing new, but it was a severely underutilized tool.
Once the pandemic hit and offices had to limit their capacity, many patients were happy to opt for a virtual consultation where they didn’t even need to leave the house.
While there will always be cases where seeing a patient in person is best, the truth is that there are many appointments that can just as easily be attended digitally. Patients are happy to get the same level of care without needing to alter their schedule as much.
Virtual Patient Support
Up until 2020, patient portals, medical websites for practices, and secure medical messaging platforms were severely underutilized by patients. Most practices had them, but only the rare patient with a love of technology would bother using them.
Since March of 2020, these have become essential components of the patient experience. They are authentic patient engagement solutions, making it easier for patients to communicate with your practice, get the answers they need, schedule appointments, and set up automatic reminders.
Practice Management Software
Having a well-running practice has always been important. However, in light of the pandemic, maintaining a smooth flow is more important than ever. Patients need to get in and out without much waiting around, and you need to minimize patient overlap wherever possible. Patient management software assists you with everything from scheduling to maximizing reimbursements.
While some things are destined to return to their pre-pandemic state, interest in virtual solutions and automation for the healthcare industry is certain to remain. Healthcare technology came up against COVID-19 and came out of the battle stronger. And with more Millennial and Gen Z patients, these trends are only going to increase with time.
To learn more about how medical technology, outsourcing, and automation can improve your practice, work with Sequence Health. Schedule your free demo today.