5 Common Telemedicine Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
Telemedicine can be a reliable tool for your medical offerings if you know how to use it. Here are common telemedicine mistakes and how to avoid them.
The healthcare industry we know is changing. Once upon a time, the only way we could visit a doctor was to meet them at their location. Today, we can meet doctors and healthcare providers in the comfort of our home if we need to.
Telemedicine is a new and rapidly growing business that’s expected to make over $65 billion dollars. In Canada, the coronavirus sped the transition to telemedicine, and it represents about 20% of all billable healthcare services.
Although telemedicine is a necessity for millions, there are telemedicine mistakes that can affect positive business and experience. If you want to know what these mistakes are and how to avoid them, keep reading.
1. Offering Too Little or Too Many Telemedicine Services
Offering services online is the reason telemedicine exists. You should offer a variety of a few services or offer specialized services. Failing to offer enough services will hurt overall growth and success, particularly with profit. At the same time, you also do not want to offer too many telemedicine services. Providing the best service should be your goal instead.
Make it your focus to build the right connections and platforms. This doesn’t mean you should never add more. It is best to do it one service at a time after you successfully build a platform. When you have any service, you must include support services for your customers.
2. Poor Communication Within the Team
When you are working with people in person or online, you need to always have solid communication within the team. If there is a change or update, everyone needs to know the new routine. Keeping everyone aware of important dates is also important.
It’s not enough to post updates on an online board. You should meet with members of the staff at least 1-2 times a week. You can schedule meetings online to do this. Be sure to use PIPEDA approved video conferencing applications, like Zoom, when communicating with staff.
Team meetings are also a great way to brainstorm and reformulate ideas and decisions together. Isolated decision-making, on the other hand, is more likely to cause mistakes and confusion when providing patient care.
Everyone needs to know why something is implemented, how to do it, and why their role is important in the success of the business. When workers can think as “one mind,” you will be able to provide the best patient care system.
3. Failing to Test or Use Technology The Proper Way
Telemedicine works great to help clients who are in need of a doctor’s visit or need a prescription but are unable to visit a hospital or clinic directly. This year, more people are choosing to stay home to be safe. While meeting with these patients, you still must be able to know how to use technology or at least get training in it.
Failing to point your camera in the right direction with clients is a problem professionals want to prevent. Failing to set your “zone” can cause these hiccups or issues with connections.
Problems every now and then happen, but they should not be often. Clients that witness these problems while on a visit may not want to return.
These mistakes can alter the overall experience and affect business in the future if poor review about the service becomes a major discussion. Always test all equipment first before connecting to visits.
4. Poor Marketing
Just because you offer a telemedicine service doesn’t mean you should expect patients to compete. You need to promote your business well for potential patients to know you even offer the service otherwise no one will know. You also need to explain what your business is and WHY those patients should come to you over another business.
Marketing your service will be the most crucial in making a profit as it is how you will both gain and retain customers. Educating patients on reasons and conditions they should opt to schedule a telemedicine meeting over instead of taking a trip to see the doctor is also helpful.
You should also provide information on how patients can create an appointment, things they should have before or during these appointments, and technical support assistance when needed.
Marketing your business is an ongoing process. It’s something you can put on autopilot once it takes off. If you want to continue to grow, you should also have a team that handles the marketing aspect of the business.
5. Not Paying Enough Attention to PIPEDA Regulations and Fee Schedules
You should still enforce PIPEDA regulations by working with Telemedicine when providing care to patients. Using virtual communication such as Skype and FaceTime are a powerful way to communicate with friends and family only. You should not use these apps in telemedicine because they do not meet PIPEDA requirements
Strict care of personal health information (PHI) is likely to get leaked when using these services. Consumer-based video sharing applications are not designed to protect patients, their information, or anything confidential. You should only use PIPEDA and PHIPA Compliant video applications.
With the rise of COVID-19, it is especially important to keep up-to-date with state laws and regulations. The evolution of the pandemic also changed scheduling times and payment for telemedicine customers and workers.
Not checking for these changes and following them, pandemic or not, can hurt future payment for services and the ability to remain open. You can check all regulations on PIPEDA compliance online to stay updated.
Avoiding These Telemedicine Mistakes
Telemedicine isn’t a new fad that is helpful for millions of people suffering from the coronavirus pandemic. It’s a healthcare service that’s here to stay because people are primed for the virtual revolution.
Telemedicine allows patients to reach out to doctors who are readily available to meet and it offers great flexibility. By avoiding telemedicine mistakes, you’re able to keep the pool of customers coming.
Are you looking for telemedicine help or have questions regarding the service and you live in Canada? If so, contact us so we can help you.