Monday, November 16, 2009

Question of the Week: Online Doctor's Visits

A post on the blog, Hospital Impact, highlights a new subscription service called Hello Health, which allows patients to schedule an appointment and meet with a doctor online.

The service is aimed at providing both patients and doctors with a convenient forum where they meet in less time than a traditional office visit.

Currently the service is not covered by any insurance companies, so patients must pay out-of-pocket for all services, but may be able to receive a reimbursement depending on their health plan.

It will be interesting to see if Hello Health picks up steam and helps to improve patient-provider communication. It will also be interesting to see if Hello Health and any other similar services eventually seek to have the time spent on online patient visits covered by insurers. If so, this could raise interesting challenges on how to credential and privilege providers working in an "online practice."

The question of the week is, what do you think of the online doctor's visit? Is it a good strategy for improving the delivery of care, or will it have little impact?

Source: Hospital Impact

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