According to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association that was conducted from March 16 through May 11, 2020, not everyone uses virtual care equally.
For instance, patients who were female, Black, Latino, older, or from low-income households were less likely to use video for telemedicine visits. Furthermore, patients who were elderly, Asian, or non-English speaking were far less likely to complete virtual visits in general.
So how do we connect with these many demographics who are not benefiting from using virtual healthcare to its fullest potential? Here are a few suggestions on how to encourage more patient engagement from those who are less likely to optimize their telemedicine visits.
Remind Patients of Video-based Telemedicine’s Advantages
According to a 2018 study, remote healthcare sessions that utilized video had several advantages over audio-only sessions: “fewer medication errors, greater diagnostic accuracy, and improved decision-making accuracy.” Inform patients of these benefits, emphasizing how not only will you be better able to assess their issues through video — it might also help them communicate with you more comfortably.
Let Them Know What to Expect Ahead of Time
The unknown is frightening, so patients who are less tech-savvy might be inherently resistant to the concept of telemedicine. Proactive communication is key here. Send them clear instructions prior to the virtual visit, and let them know exactly what to expect. Remember: telemedicine is still new to many patients, so it will be natural for some individuals to be hesitant. Improve their confidence through concise correspondences with them, leaving no common questions unanswered.
Minimize Clicks to Connect for Your Patient
The fewer places patients have to click to connect to the telemedicine visit, the less likely they will have issues with the software you’re using. Minimal clicks prevent technology frustrations and lead to simpler troubleshooting if errors do occur. Choose a software solution that strives to keep clicks to a minimum and easily integrates into other digital solutions your practice uses.
Choose HIPAA-compliant Telemedicine Software
If the patient feels like their privacy will be respected during their remote session, they’ll be more likely to attend. Only certain software is truly HIPAA-compliant, and those should be the only solutions your practice considers for a telemedicine appointment. Once you confirm your software is HIPAA-compliant, ensure patients that just like in-office visits, their confidentiality is being maintained during virtual visits.
DocResponse Caters to ALL Demographics
Once you’ve given your telemedicine-resistant demographics the peace of mind to move forward with a remote session, the only thing left to do is make sure your software will easily get them through the virtual door.
DocResponse is an all-in-one software solution that offers telemedicine and is:
- Patient-friendly: The vocabulary of the software’s interface is easy to understand and available in Spanish.
- Single-click: Patients are able to connect to their telemedicine visit through a single click; no app downloads are necessary.
- HIPAA-compliant: DocResponse’s software is fully secure and adheres to all HIPAA rules and regulations.
Certain demographics might not be as receptive to virtual care, but we can take measures to make them more comfortable with it. Schedule a demo to learn more about how DocResponse helps narrow the patient engagement gaps with their simple-to-use software!