Updated: Jan 3
Happy New Year!
What are your resolutions for 2023? If you’re a healthcare provider or medical interpreter, you might get some inspiration from the current state of telehealth and patient internet use. But what is that, exactly?
To give us a clearer picture, we’ve compiled some facts from several sources, including this 2023 healthcare marketing stats list from Invoca; The Chartis Group and Kythera Lab’s massive study on telehealth, which we reported on a few weeks ago; and a recent telemedicine use study by the CDC.
But this won’t just be a list! We’ve decided to start the year with a little challenge: a multiple-choice quiz on telehealth and patient internet search habits.
For each question, choose your answer from one of the options. The correct response will be just below those choices.
1. What percent of Google searches are related to health?
a. 5%. That sounds like a low number, but when you consider this is a global statistic, it still represents a staggering number of people!
2. Which type of healthcare provider is subject to the most internet searches before patients schedule an appointment with them?
c. physical therapists
c. physical therapists. According to Invoca’s telehealth marketing report, 84% of patients reported looking up physical therapists (including their online reviews) before choosing one and making an appointment.
3. True or false: Patients prefer to book in-person and telehealth appointments online?
False. An impressive 88% of patients still prefer to use the phone to book appointments with their healthcare providers. Invoca’s report found that people prefer to talk to a real person when booking an appointment because it gives an impression of privacy and a personal connection.
4. What percent of patients are more likely to choose a healthcare provider if their services seem personalized (ability to call the office directly, a friendly feeling to a website, etc.)?
b. 47%. As we’ve seen in many of our articles over the past years, feeling a personal connection with healthcare providers is important to a growing number of patients, especially among younger generations.
5. What percent of US adults have used telehealth in the past year?
c. 37%. According to a recent CDC study, 37% of US adults aged 18 and over have had a telehealth consultation in the past year. That means that telehealth has become a part of life for close to half of all Americans!
6. Which group is more likely to use telemedicine: men or women?
b. women. The CDC found that women had a 42% likelihood of telemedicine use, whereas the rate was only 31.7% for men. One of the reasons for this may be that men tend to be more reluctant to seek out medical care.
7. What are some groups who face significant barriers when it comes to using telehealth?
b. people with disabilities
c. patients who rely on a medical interpreter
d. patients in rural areas
e. all of the above
e. all of the above. Unfortunately, these and other patient groups often face barriers that keep them from fully benefiting from telehealth.
While the American Medical Association recently reported that a majority of US seniors (people aged 65 and older) are happy with telehealth as an option, 27% said they had had so much difficulty using this technology that they had to switch to a phone call for their appointment.
People with disabilities, meanwhile, often face issues with interfaces that are not adapted to them. For instance, blind or visually impaired patients usually don’t have the option of hearing audio instructions on telehealth platforms.
Patients with limited English proficiency or no English proficiency rely on medical interpreters. But often, they or the medical professional they’re working with may have trouble feeling connected, or simply have trouble making the connection to the interpreter in a technical sense.
Much of this can be overcome if healthcare providers work with experienced, certified medical interpreters like aiaTranslations’. But sadly, this isn’t always an option.
Patients in rural areas, meanwhile, struggle with connection issues. Many may not have a reliable internet connection. This is especially frustrating since this group may face the most difficulty in getting to in-person consultations in the first place. Specialists, especially, may be located hours away from them.
Hopefully one of the advances in telehealth that we’ll see in 2023 will be a solution to these problems!
However you scored, hopefully you found this quiz interesting and informative. Here’s to a good start for all of us in 2023, and here’s hoping that telehealth will continue to evolve and improve over the next 12 months!
Contact Our Writer – Alysa Salzberg