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February 22, 2017
Behavioral health is much different than primary care. Codes, evaluations, and care practices are different in many ways. The use of Electronic Health Records (EHRs) is sweeping the primary care world, but is it useful to professionals – and patients – in the world of behavioral health? At this point, there is no definitive answer to this question. The studies have started, and the usage of EHRs is fairly new, at least in the capacity they are currently being used, which is expected to grow a lot over the next couple of years.
EHRs store all their application and data information in the cloud. A managed service provider takes care of all the intricacies and manages the data. They keep track of the analytics, make sure the systems stay online, and make sure all the devices are connected properly to ensure fluid operation at all times. Advantages of the technology include: on-demand service, elastic scaling, agility, and Internet of Things (IoT) connectivity.
The Telemedicine Boom
The technology of telemedicine is growing. There is no stopping it. HealthLeadersMedia reported that “telemedicine visits among Medicare beneficiaries increased by 28% each year from 2004 to 2013, and that 107,000 telemedicine visits were provided in 2013.” Compared to the population that is only 1% using telemedicine. However, there is an ever-increasing need for the technology. People are living longer, and they need better ways of getting around. Telehealth provides the answer for them. According to the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine (JABFM), “Almost half the U.S. population will meet the criteria for a mental health disorder during their lifetime.” That is a huge amount. Now imagine all the people who will not go because they are embarrassed, or because of a phobia, or other physical issues associated with their illness. That is how telehealth can help.
More managed service providers are ready to help behavioral institutions with this dilemma. Not only can they help with the hardware and software to get small offices prepared for the technology, but they conform to the local laws and requirements to keep the data safe from everyone outside of the office environment.
Managed Service Providers
Managed service providers bring healthcare to the patient. Through various cloud technologies the cloud provider can create cloud to cloud infrastructures that link the patient directly to the providers, physician, or hospital. Patients can easily take assessments from their mobile device without leaving the security of their home.
Video therapy is making its mark in the behavioral health market. The video therapy sessions can be paid in advance, it is easy to schedule for both the physician and the patient, and most insurers reimburse the patient. Through online charts or wearable sensors, patient data can be tracked on a daily basis.
Managed service providers can provide offices, hospitals, or clinics with the applications they need to perform whatever medical screenings, video chat, or assessments they require. The cloud providers make sure the lines of communication are always open between the patient and the health provider.
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