The Department of Veterans Affairs has struggled with exceptionally long wait times for veterans to see a physician. The wait has been especially long in California as the problem is compounded with exceptionally long driving times. New telehealth services similar to Skype or FaceTime have changed the equation. In some cases the wait has dropped from three months to one week. Of the of 60,000 veterans who receive their health care from the V.A. hospital in Ventura County, 6,000 have used telehealth services. Telehealth is also connecting to connect vets served by rural clinics with specialists at larger hospitals. See full story.
Telehealth is taking off. In other news, surveys are showing 9 out of 10 large companies will offer telehealth in 2017. As remote devices become available, such as otoscopes, stethoscopes, and opthalmoscopes, a higher number of telehealth consultations will be possible. Read more about telehealth in Health Attitude.