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Challenges Facing the World of Telehealth in 2017


May 20, 2017

There has been a steady rise in the use of telehealth programs to solve the challenges facing the healthcare sector across the world. Consulting health specialists via the web is becoming increasingly commonplace and a number of positive outcomes have been attributed to the growing adoption of telehealth platforms.

Due to the uniqueness of the internet, telehealth has greatly improved access to health care while considerably reducing the costs incurred. It is, therefore, no wonder that telehealth has been better integrated into rural areas.

Despite its many benefits, there are a number of challenges that stand in the way of a more widespread utilization of telemedicine. Here are some of these challenges:

Regulation Requirement

Considering that most telehealth services are provided over the internet using cloud computing or virtual health coaching, services can be accessed from anywhere.

Although this is amazing news, especially for patients in rural areas where health care facilities may be miles away, it poses a challenge for practitioners. Each state may have different regulations and licensing requirements: reconciling these differences can be a huge problem for practitioners.

At times, practitioners may use a B2B email to find e mail address free service to search for the contact details for appropriate regulatory bodies.

The American Medical Association is currently working on a federal legislation to ensure uniformity in regulation across all states. Until such regulations materialize, medical practitioners are finding it extremely difficult to provide telemedicine prudently across states.

Interruption of Service Delivery

Internet service disruptions can be annoying and frustrating in your personal life, but when it comes to health matters, the consequences might be disastrous.

Telehealth services are prone to the risks associated with cyber-attacks. A denial of service attack on a physician’s system, for instance, can spell doom for a patient with a heart pacer who might need immediate attention.

Therefore, the volatility and unpredictability of telehealth systems have made many medical practitioners wary about implementing one. In addition, telehealth being a new concept, many practitioners may not be willing to go back to school and acquire the necessary skills to use telemedicine in their practice to the maximum.

People are usually reluctant to accept change. Medical practitioners, being human, may be reluctant to fully accept telehealth as the next frontier in health care.

Huge Investment needs

Implementing a successful and effective telehealth care system demands significant funds. There are a lot of issues that must be put into consideration. What type of technology should we use? What happens when the system fails? Is the internet connection reliable and fast enough? The list is endless.

What this means is a huge capital investment in infrastructure and personnel. And this might be an issue at a time when the current trend seems to be towards cutting costs.

Despite these challenges, it is evident that telehealth is here and here to stay. Future innovation should be able to streamline the process and we can expect at least some forms of telehealth to become the norm in the next few years.


By Emily