UnitedHealthcare, the largest health insurance in the country is partnering with three telemedicine companies to put telehealth at par with a regular trip to the doctor’s office via video chat. UnitedHealthcare will cover virtual doctor visits offered through NowClinic, American Well and Doctor on Demand. The initiative is intended to give people enrolled in self-funded employer health plans 24-hour online access to a physician using real-time audio and video technology, whether at home or on the go.
Access to Affordable Health Care Options
The platforms will connect thousands of patients with doctors making telemedicine more accessible in most parts of America especially in rural areas where subspecialty care is often lacking. Video based virtual visits cost less than $50, but members will only have to pay their usual co-pay, making telehealth more affordable. The coverage for virtual care provider is available to self-funded employer customers and is set to expand to individual plans participants and the UnitedHelthcare employer-sponsored customers in 2016. This will give more people expanded in-network care options.
Innovative Telemedicine Solutions
UnitedHealthcare is an influential player in the health care industry and its partnership to telemedicine is a strong sign that technology is entering the mainstream in the medical care. Telemedicine has many benefits including convenience, immediacy, and easy access, and this groundbreaking initiative is a significant step for the healthcare industry to expand telehealth coverage. The initiative validates the approach of telemedicine giving access to quality medical care.
Telehealth companies will use technology to eliminate most overheads that contribute to the high cost of health care. Video- based virtual visits will also help care centers offload some of the easily treated cases. The participants can obtain diagnosis and necessary prescriptions for minor medical needs like flus, cold, sinus, allergies, bruises and bumps out of the offline settings freeing up the waiting rooms so that doctors can focus on patients who really need in-person care. The value-based initiative plans to deliver excellent patient experience giving them access to reliable and cost efficient access to medical care whenever they need it.