ICYMI: Telehealth Increases Care Access and Quality Levels For Cancer Patients
Study Finds Telehealth to Provide Better Access and Higher Levels of Provider Concern Compared to In-Person Treatment
In case you missed it, researchers from the Moffitt Cancer Center found that oncology patients who utilized telehealth for their care reported a better experience on the grounds of increased access and quality of care when compared to traditional in-person care.
The study, conducted between April 1, 2020, and June 30, 2021, surveyed over 33,000 oncology patients and compared the findings of those who received virtual care to those who received in-person care. The survey found that 75.8 percent of telehealth patients reported they were satisfied with their care access, compared to 62.5 percent of patients receiving in-person care.
When asked about provider care concern, more than 90 percent of telehealth patients reported they were satisfied with their care quality, over 6 percent higher than the care quality satisfaction report from patients receiving in-person care.
Researchers that worked on the study praised increased access to telehealth and its benefits to oncology patients. Senior Researcher Philippe E. Spiess, MD, MS said, “Telemedicine visits can be incorporated in patients’ day-to-day schedule so they can complete their appointments before or after work, or during a break. It gives them flexibility and ultimately increases access” and called for continued provider support of telehealth protections on behalf of patients and providers.
Previous studies have shown additional benefits of telehealth for cancer care as well, one study from the National Cancer Institute found that telehealth treatment can save patients time and money by removing the need for travel, saving oncology patients an average of 2.9 hours of driving time, and shortening time in-clinic by an average of 1.2 hours.
Congress must listen to the mounting evidence and calls to action from researchers and providers and create permanent telehealth protections now.
ABOUT TELEHEALTH ACCESS FOR AMERICA
Telehealth Access for America (TAFA) is a public education campaign supported by leaders in health care committed to better care, expanded patient choice, and protecting access to critical telehealth services. Learn more and take action today at www.telehealthaccessforamerica.org.