COVID-19 has changed the essential operation of many sectors. The health sector has experienced tremendous changes as telehealth ballooned in 2020 as many governments globally relaxed some of the COVID-19 measures, such as lockdowns. Many hospitals limited visitation for the inpatients while trying to contain the pandemic. The relaxation of some of these measures led to the return of visits. Notably, between November and December, telehealth shares of the medical field ticked up, and the rate has been growing up to about 8.3 percent nationally. According to the Fair Health report, the percentage rise has been witnessed monthly, and this has been a clear pointer of the lasting delivery power methods.
A recent study proves an increase in telehealth claims filled in the four U.S. census regions compared to other years, more so 2019. Besides, there was a smaller rise in telehealth claims than what was witnessed in November. Although the four Census regions in the U.S. saw a steady increase of telehealth claims, Midwest recorded a decline of these claims to about 0.3%, according to Fair Health’s data, which mainly focuses on a privately insured population except Medicare and Medicaid.
As the COVID-19 caseload rises in many countries experiencing their second or 3rd wave, virtual visits will increase. In contrast, telehealth services visits will decrease more so for patients who exhibit flu-like symptoms. However, we can note that weak flu cases have not been rising, probably due to the precaution measures are taken by various public health officials.
Fair Health embarked on a study to establish the aftermath effects of COVID-19. During the social isolation period, many people were stressed, and others went to depression and anxiety. With this data, we appreciate that mental health conditions and other underlying conditions are vital areas that have significantly contributed to the demand for telehealth services. As telehealth services sink in the minds of many and various health centers adopting this solution, infectious diseases such as COVID-19 have contributed significantly to the use of telehealth diagnosis. Physicians take health matters seriously; hence they encourage telehealth services to keep the contagious Coronavirus at bay.
Although we are experiencing new regulations from various sectors, telehealth services remain popular, even as the demand for services increases.