Overview of Telemedicine
Telemedicine allows health care professionals to evaluate, diagnose and treat patients online or over the phone. About 63 percent of most illnesses or issues that a family physician would see a patient for can be treated via telemedicine.
“Telemedicine stands out as the fastest-growing health care cost-management technique among employers,” said Julie Stich, CEBS, associate vice president of content at the IFEBP. “In 2016, 44 percent of employers offered telemedicine options. By 2018, that number had jumped to 64 percent. Employees appreciate the 24/7 convenience of telemedicine, and both employers and employees see savings because costly trips to urgent care clinics or emergency rooms might be avoided.”
Employers & Telemedicine
Depending on your medical plan, you may have telemedicine embedded into the plan. A question you will want to ask your broker is “Are the visits of employees and their dependents using on Telemedicine hitting our claims utilization?”
If they are, you may want to consider an adding an outside telemedicine product so that you can lower your claims utilization. Lower claims = lower premiums.
If you’re an employee, you will want to ask your employer, “What is the cost for a telemedicine visit?” Also, another thing to note is that if you do not cover your spouse or children on the company’s medical plan, can you still also have them use the telemedicine?
Bottom Line: There are many variations of telemedicine, you want to make sure that you’re getting the most out of yours.
Individuals & Telemedicine
Individuals also have access to telemedicine more now than ever before. Families can enroll into a telemedicine plan and pay $0 copay or $0 for visits through HealthiestYou.
HealthiestYou, a Teladoc company, offers flexible plans with no contract. You can enroll yourself, a spouse, or the whole family online here.
* Stats posted for Teladoc Health.
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