Virtual care has only become more popular in the past decade. This is mostly due to the increase in telecommuting and remote workers who are looking for a doctor who can come to them. There is less hassle and traveling, saving both you and your patients' money and time. Today, more and more businesses provide remote care with a team of doctors, nurses, and therapists using the Internet. This new service, called virtual care, allows patients to be treated in the comfort and privacy of their homes instead of visiting a therapist's office or hospital. Learn about virtual care's history, how it works, its pros and cons, and how convenience is changing the medical game.
Virtual care is a more convenient and efficient way of delivering healthcare. It's also part of a larger set of solutions known as telehealth – which describes technology-enabled healthcare delivery typically delivered remotely by medical professionals. Virtual care can be provided via a few different modes of remote healthcare delivery. These include, but aren't limited to, virtual clinics, telemedicine, video conferencing, and mobile apps (such as medical chatbots).
It has many advantages, including:
A major advantage of telehealth is that it is cost-effective. The cost of providing remote patient monitoring and other services is typically lower than traditional health care because it eliminates the need for physical visits and long commutes. As a result, patients spend less money on travel, parking fees, and gasoline and can spend more time with their families or at work rather than sitting in waiting rooms or on hold withcall centers.
You can schedule an online appointment with your doctor at any time and from anywhere in the world — as long as you have access to high-speed Internet and a computer or mobile device with video capabilities. Some health insurance companies are even starting to cover these types of appointments under their plans.
One of the biggest benefits of virtual care is that it's safe. Patients can log on from home, making it easy for them to connect with you and your team without worrying about traveling to your office or clinic. This type of convenience helps patients feel more comfortable and relaxed during their visit, which can result in more positive experiences overall.
Because patients can receive care from the comfort of their own homes, they are more engaged in their treatment plans. When they feel more invested in their care, they are more likely to follow through with treatments and stick with a course of treatment until their condition has been resolved. This helps you provide better care at lower costs as well as improved patient satisfaction.
Virtual care allows patients to receive treatment without leaving home or work. This gives them more control over their own health, which can improve overall health outcomes. A study showed that people who received virtual care experienced fewer complications after knee surgery than those who received traditional in-person care.
The disadvantages are as follows:
Virtual care is not a substitute for in-person care. While virtual care can help patients who are too ill or disabled to visit the office, it is not always possible to diagnose or treat patients remotely. In addition, some chronic conditions require regular monitoring, which can be more difficult when most of your interactions with patients take place via video chat or phone.
Some specialty treatments require a physical exam by an expert in the field. These include treatment for burns and other traumatic injuries, which may require plastic surgery; treatment for eye disease, which may necessitate an ophthalmologist; and treatment for serious infections such as MRSA, which may require an infectious disease specialist. If you are unable to offer in-person treatment for these conditions, you will limit your ability to provide adequate care for your patients.
While health literacy has improved over time, some research suggests it remains poor among certain Americans — especially older adults and people with low incomes and limited education. This could make it difficult forthem to understand and comply with instructions from their doctors about how best to manage their health conditions using it.
The internet connection is crucial for virtual visits. If there is no good internet connection or other technical issues, you may face difficulties while making a video call. The patients may experience poor voice quality, slow internet speed, or even signal loss. Therefore, checking the internet speed before scheduling a virtual appointment is essential.
Some patients may also be concerned about safety and privacy when using virtual care. The privacy of your medical records is protected under HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), but there is always the possibility that a hacker could gain access to them through an insecure connection or other means. Also, suppose you use an app that allows you to access your medical records from your phone or tablet. In that case, it's possible that someone could steal your device and view your confidential information without your knowledge or permission.
For many small businesses, the cost of capital can be a major obstacle to growth. Capital is money that can be used to grow your business, but if you cannot secure financing, it's hard to make your business grow.
In this blog, we'll explore ways small businesses can finance their growth without diluting ownership or taking on debt through the virtual care platform.
Non-dilutive capital allows you to raise funds without having to pledge collateral or take on debt in your business plan — making it an attractive option for many healthcare professionals looking for funding sources that won't compete with their practice's revenue streams.
Here are some of the benefits of non-dilutive capital:
Your company remains 100% yours, even if you take on debt. You retain full ownership over your business and its assets. This means you'll never lose any control over your company simply because you need capital.
Since there's no interest charged on non-dilutive capital, this type of loan is easier on your bottom line than other options like bank loans or credit cards. You'll also be able to pay off your loan faster than if it was attached to a high-interest rate charge. When you're able to pay off the loan faster, you save money on interest payments and have more money available for other purposes (like growing your business).
Merchant cash advance (MCA) is a form of financing that small businesses can use to help them manage the cash flow in their businesses. This type of loan comes with a higher interest rate than other types of loans and is usually paid back within three to six months.
Merchant cash advance companies provide small businesses with working capital advances on credit card transactions they have received but not yet processed. The merchant agrees to pay a percentage of every credit card transaction back to the lender as repayment for the loan. The lender then processes all of the transactions and takes its percentage out before paying the rest to you.
The main benefit of merchant cash advances is that it does not require collateral or personal guarantees from the business owner. It allows business owners more flexibility when managing their finances since they know exactly how much money they will have coming in each month based on previous sales figures.
A line of credit is a loan that allows you to borrow up to a certain amount at any time during the year. You can borrow the entire amount or just part of it. Small businesses often use a line of credit as working capital. For example, if you need more than one month's operating expenses, you can use a line of credit to bridge the payday gap. Suppose you have good collateral, such as accounts receivable or inventory. In that case, you may be able to get a revolving line of credit without having to put up collateral for it.
The SBA loans offer low-interest loans to small businesses through its 7(a) loan program, which is designed for companies that need between $50,000 and $5 million in financing. You can apply online or by mail. Your application will be reviewed within two weeks, although it may take longer depending on the size of your company and the complexity of your needs. If approved, you'll receive a commitment letter from the SBA within 30 days, including details about your loan terms and conditions and closing dates for disbursements.
Factoring invoices involves a third party buying your invoices at a discounted price in exchange for immediate cash flow. This service is ideal for small businesses that sell products on credit terms or have customers who pay late in the cycle.
With factoring invoices, you don't have to wait until an invoice is paid before getting paid yourself. Your cash flow issues are resolved almost immediately after you deliver goods or provide services to your customer — as opposed to waiting weeks or months until they pay up of their own accord.
Evidence has shown that face-to-face care is better than no care, and where it is not possible to provide this, virtual care services can help fill the gap. This is especially important for individuals who need long-term care, such as those with complex needs requiring specialist interventions and support. With the cost of healthcare a major concern for individuals and businesses, remote care continues to prove to be a viable alternative to hiring a full-time or part-time doctor. If you're looking to get into this growing market, now is the time. And no matter what your motivation, it's important to arm yourself with information before diving in head first.