img Explainer

Expanding Healthcare Accessibility through Telehealth
ONC Editorial

Jun 02, 2023

This Explainer discusses telehealth and the many services it provides.

Telehealth includes both remote clinical services and non-clinical services. It also includes telemedicine, which is defined as online care provided by a medical professional, and can be accessed in any place where a device with an internet connection is available.

Telehealth, in its modern form, began in 1960 and mainly focused on diagnosis and clinical management. Telehealth can include video calls with medical professionals, secure messaging between patients and medical professionals, and monitoring of medical information such as vital signs via a device at home. While telehealth may not be insured by federal statute, states can choose to include telehealth in their Medicaid programs.

The services provided by telehealth can include lab tests and x-ray results, post-surgical follow-ups, therapy, skin condition information, prescription management and information and address some minor urgent care conditions such as a cold.

Additionally, telehealth provides many benefits including cost-effective care, shortened wait times for appointments, more access to specialists from different regions, access to healthcare in remote locations, decreased travel time and lowered need for time taken off from work and childcare services.

Due to telehealth being accessible to any person with an internet connection, it has a growing importance in rural communities where the closest doctor’s office or hospital may be dozens of miles away.

To see all sources consulted/reviewed/interviewed for the purposes of writing this article and/or to learn more about this article’s author, Sophia Welsh, click here

comments powered by Disqus

Video Site Tour


Subscribe to ONC Newsletter.