When you come down with a cold you just can’t shake or sprain a body part, you probably need to visit the doctor. But if you don’t have a primary physician or are out of network, going in for a checkup can cost you a ton of time and a lot of money. But this could all change within the next 5 years. The push for virtual health care is stronger than ever as doctors are overloaded and patients struggle to squeeze visits into busy schedules. According to the National Business Group on Health (NBGH), 2016 will be the year of the virtual doctor. The telehealth industry is attracting tons of dollars and is projected to save American companies $6 billion a year. If you are looking for a new investment this year, consider the telehealth industry.
This year an estimated 450,000 patients will see a virtual doctor for ailments like aches and pains, colds, and infections. The American Telemedicine Association industry group believes that virtual doctors will improve health care in America. In the next year, many health care providers will work with companies to provide virtual services to consumers. Leading companies like Doctor on Demand, Teladoc, and MDLive have patients routed to a doctor who practices and prescribes medicine in their area.
Currently, Walgreens is rolling out a virtual doctor service in 25 states. Meanwhile, Anthem and UnitedHealth Group are making telemedicine services available to over 40 million people by next year. 29 states currently require health care providers to offer virtual doctor services. Patients in these states should see a significant reduction in payments for visits. Depending on the patient’s coverage, they may not owe anything for virtual services or may only owe standard co-pays which range from $15 to $25. If the patient doesn’t have insurance, most online services will only charge about $40 to $50 per consultation. The savings are even greater when considering emergency room visitation. Generally these visits cost hundreds of dollars.
The availability of virtual doctor services can change health care in the country, making it more affordable for businesses and patients. To open your virtual doctor merchant account, contact the high risk industries experts at eMerchantBroker.com. We specialize in creating and maintaining online doctor’s merchant accounts.