A mere five years ago, telehealth was slowly making its presence known, used by less than 20% of healthcare facilities in the U.S. However, during the coronavirus outbreak, that number skyrocketed 154% within the first weeks of April. Saving patients an average of over 100 minutes of traveling and waiting time, telehealth has earned its place in the modern healthcare landscape.
However, despite its newfound popularity, several concerns still pose a challenge to full integration, such as:
- Legal and regulatory issues
- Patient confidentiality for EHRs
- Payment tracking and security
- Staff adoption rates
- Loss of “human touch”
Logistical and IT Constraints
Nevertheless, results uncovered in Zebra’s 2022 Hospital Vision Study cite telehealth as one of the top technologies changing hospitals nationwide with over 70% of patients reporting feeling more comfortable about the use of clinical devices in healthcare facilities. With telehealth here to stay, we’ve investigated a few components to consider when preparing your healthcare technology to accommodate a new telehealth solution.
Maintaining Continuity in Connectivity
Because telehealth is by no means a substitute for face-to-face treatments, solutions require dependable networking and connectivity signals to bridge the gap between distanced patients and caregivers. Devices should be able to sustain connections while displaying supporting resources —EHRs, lab reports, test results, etc. —at the same time.
Ensuring Trusted Security and Data Confidentiality
2020 also saw a 10% increase in healthcare data breaches, resulting in an average $6.45 billion loss per breach. As we continue to move into the digital age, healthcare-grade durability must extend into the digital landscape as well. That means outdated operating systems, applications, and software all pose a threat to efficient telehealth. Modernized data security in enterprise-ready operating systems like Zebra’s fortified Android protect patient information with government-grade encryption, two-factor authentication, and customized security levels.
Preparing for the Future with Scalability
Quality healthcare will always be in demand. Therefore, your mobile devices should be flexible and scalable to serve more patients—whether they originate from the aging population, a sudden health crisis, or recurrent chronic issues. This is where Zebra’s Rugged L10 Tablets can provide immediate benefits, with their flexible networking options, Android OS fortified protection, and streamlined computing, communication, and data capture capabilities, enabling staff to rely upon them anywhere in and out of the hospital.
On a Final Note: Expanding Ease-of-Use
Lastly, devices should prioritize ease-of-use to protect the human touch. When doctors and nurses lack confidence in operating clinical devices, patients may feel discouraged to trust in your telehealth system. Therefore, devices should simplify file retrieval, data sharing, videoconferencing, and troubleshooting to help users feel confident in conducting healthcare without worrying about device performance.
Over 80% of Americans currently own a mobile device compatible with telehealth systems, further helping telehealth become accessible to more patients. To see how you can start equipping your staff with future-forward mobility solutions, CONTACT US for a free assessment of your current workflows.