Telemedicine has the long-term potential to alleviate some key issues faced by the healthcare systems of several countries, post Covid-19 pandemic.

Among the ongoing issues faced by the  healthcare systems include shortage of healthcare workforce in providing primary and secondary care; increased spending in healthcare and the pressure to provide value-based care for patients; providing access to affordable care to uninsured, rural and people; and preventing transmission of infectious diseases between healthcare professionals and patients.

Although several governments have temporarily eased rules around telemedicine usage, healthcare staff, patients and lawmakers have been mounting pressure on governments to make these rules permanent.

In August 2020, the former US President Trump announced that some of the regulatory changes regarding telemedicine would continue to exist even post Covid-19 pandemic, and now it is likely that other countries would follow the same path.

Across the world, patients, healthcare staff, governments and payers have come to realise the benefits of telemedicine. Resistance to innovation in the healthcare segment is a common issue, however, Covid-19 pandemic has indicated how quickly the sector has embraced digitalisation.

Despite the benefits offered by telemedicine, its widespread adoption is still marred by some challenges including lack of reimbursement in some countries; insufficient awareness levels among healthcare staff and patients; security concerns; and technology and connectivity issues.

The information is based on the GlobalData report ‘Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Sector Impact: Use of Telemedicine During the COVID-19 Pandemic in the US – August 2020’.