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Bridging the Gap Between Telehealth and Behavioral Health

Posted: August 9th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: Basics, In the News, Telehealth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

Telehealth, Mental Health, Behavioral Health, Telemedicine

Improving the U.S. healthcare system requires the simultaneous pursuit of three ideals: improving the experience of care, improving the health of populations and reducing per capita costs of healthcare. “Value-based care” after all, does have its reasons behind the term. In keeping up with this new delivery model, it’s important to understand how behavioral health attributes to population health, its effects on the healthcare system and the nation’s bottom line. This is where technology can play a major role.

In a given year, nearly 44 million adults experience mental illness, with a quarter of them living with a substance use co-disorder. Increasing access to mental health professionals via technology is simply a smart solution as more and more individuals grapple with suicide, addiction, and other mental health issues. Unfortunately, the stigma often associated with mental illness is creating a barrier to treatment, but telehealth companies are realizing this enormous growth opportunity and are remaining at the forefront by providing a more convenient and less expensive medical consultation.

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Since counseling really only requires the ability for patients and providers to speak via video or phone, utilizing telehealth applications allows patients to receive treatment without judgement in the comfort of their own home. It creates a safe space for mental health dialogue, thus aiming to reduce hospital admissions and its associated costs. Therefore, behavioral health must embrace technology and its ability to bridge the gaps in care to the benefit of patients nationwide.

To expand upon the evolving increase in technological access to care, it’s important to note that less than 50% of Americans who are prescribed medications to treat mental health conditions take them as directed, if at all, according to industry reports. Marrying telehealth and efforts such as medication adherence programs can assist a patient’s road to recovery while reducing the $193.2 billion in lost earnings per year associated with serious mental illness in America.

Sources: Health Affairs; HealthcareDIVE; National Alliance on Mental Illness; Forbes

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DoseSpot is a Surescripts certified e-Prescribing platform specifically designed to integrate with electronic health record, electronic dental record, practice management and telehealth software. DoseSpot is certified to e-Prescribe controlled substances and has provided simple, affordable and integratable e-Prescribing solutions to healthcare IT companies since 2009. For more information, please visit http://www.DoseSpot.com.