Medical services figure out among the essential services, and the COVID-19 crisis has only meant that the common people have limited access to all the medical resources. The medical resources include but are not limited to medicines, hospitals, doctors, and consultation with paramedical staff.
Considering all these factors, medical services that were once supposed to be a proper personal experience have transcended into the digital territory by bringing in telemedicine.
Telemedicine has turned out to be a big boon for both patients and doctors alike. On one side, patients do not have to wait for consultations for hours together outside clinics, especially when the entire consultation lasts about five minutes and the waiting time is more than an hour. Telemedicine apps not only help get consultation but even in scheduling appointments, get receipts and even complete payments online!
The Relevance of Telemedicine Apps
Telemedicine software development has been seeing a surge these days and it can only be attributed to its globally recognised relevance. It has been observed that in most of the United States, patients need to wait 24 days on an average to get an appointment with a physician. Therefore, these patients resort to visiting the emergency department to avoid inconvenience and delays rendering useful and critical medical resources being wasted.
The telemedicine market which was worth less than $20 billion in 2015 is all set to reach the $50 billion mark by 2021, showing a 250% growth in just seven years!
Parallel to this, 82% of the patients share the view that technology should merge with medicine in making healthcare more accessible and some of them have compared their expectations to transportation and food ordering. 77% of those patients have also said that they would like to passively communicate with their doctor by text messages and 69% of those would prefer virtual appointments with their physicians using videoconferencing on mobile devices as opposed to off-line visits.
From a Doctor’s Perspective
Telemedicine it’s not just a boon not just for patients but also for doctors. Doctors just like any other professionals, are expected to strike a perfect balance between their professional and personal lives but the massive degree of uncertainty and emergency in their profession prevents them from doing so.
In addition, they also need to manage the daily pressure of cost-cutting just like any other business or earning professional. They also need to establish their compliance with regulations and it becomes increasingly difficult for them to do so with offline records. Telemedicine app development processes would definitely address these issues for doctors.
More often than not, the expertise of doctors can be made available online through a consultation irrespective of them being physically present. This means that doctors can maintain regular workers and always be available for consultations.
Time management has always been a big challenge for doctors and it plays a major role in striking the work life balance. With telemedicine applications, it becomes easy for doctors to spend time with their families and maybe even on a vacation but at the same time be available for their patients.
Benefits of the Telemedicine App
Telemedicine app developers put together a lot of features that present a plethora of advantages.
One of the first and foremost advantages presented by these applications is cost-effective Ness. The cost effectiveness works not only for patients but also for doctors. On one side, doctors do not have to spend their resources like real estate and electricity in setting up a clinic. They can be available over a video call for consultations and it reduces real estate and electricity costs by a considerable chunk. This cost reductions translate into lower consultation fees for patients. Since the doctor is more available, they can also increase the volume of business and even this would translate to lower consultation fees for the patient.
Another big advantage brought about by these apps is the flexibility which gives doctors. Doctors can now command their work hours and they can also respond to emergencies with a greater degree of availability.
It opens up an additional stream of revenue for medical professionals. This literally makes the market for doctors 24/7! As a direct consequence of increased availability, doctors can now earn more revenue.
These telemedicine applications completely eliminate the factors sandwiched between the patient leaving home and reaching the doctor at their premises. It includes highly stressing factors like traffic, especially in highly populated cities, and even trivial things like dressing up!
Telemedicine app developers have to put together a few essential features to ensure that the app works perfectly. The telemedicine app, just like any other on demand app, has to have different apps for doctors and patients, and should also have an administrator overseeing both these involved parties.
The App for the Patient
The patient should easily be able to sign up for the services by using simple login information like email addresses or phone numbers or legacy credentials like Google and Facebook. They should also be able to create their account with important information like age, sex, insurance, and existing chronic medical conditions like diabetes and BP.
Based on their location and their requirements at that point in time, the patients should be able to quickly search for a necessary specialist. For this purpose, it is highly recommended that Google maps or Apple maps be integrated with the app in addition to a third-party API that would help in determining the location of the patient using GPS. Consolidating information regarding the clinics and the medical stores available in the vicinity of the patient location would greatly help in enhancing the usability of the app.
The app should also have access to the camera, so consultations can be done using video calls. However, in all of this, it needs to be remembered that the app needs to be kept compliant with the regulations that address the privacy and security of medical data. All the data of your patients should be kept safe from any possible data breaches. It is recommended that existing third-party apps are used for video calling.
To make the payment and to make the entire process of payment hassle-free, your app should be integrated with a versatile payment gateway that supports multiple payment methods including but not limited to credit cards, debit cards, wallets, and internet banking.
After the consultation is over and the payment is made, the patient should be able to review the doctor for their experience with them. This will help in creating a democratic ecosystem for both doctors and patients alike.
The App for the Doctor
To create a complete telemedicine app, you will need to have a dedicated app for the doctor as well. The doctor should have a few dedicated features that will make it easy for both of them and the patients.
The doctor should be able to access all the vital information about patients regarding their health information, their drug prescriptions, and also have a Calendar for themselves with scheduled appointments.
The calendar should be able to efficiently manage appointments by taking into consideration the patient requirements and matching it with the availability of the doctor.
The app should also have a messaging platform when the doctor and the patient can communicate without leaving the app. The messaging should also facilitate interchange of files including but not limited to prescriptions, reports and x-rays. It is to be remembered that every data that is being transferred is extremely sensitive and needs to be handled with care.
There are different ways to go ahead and create your telemedicine app and it is a perfect time when the crisis only makes telemedicine more relevant and the world is progressing towards making things available conveniently over an app. If you would like to create a business out of this emerging market for telemedicine, you need to get in touch with a telemedicine software development company.
Alternatively, you can consider using white label clones of existing apps like HealthTap and DoctorOnDemand. This not only saves you a lot of time and money but also ensures that all the basic functionalities are intact without any possibility of bags. All you need to do is get in touch with these companies and they will take care not only to create but even customise the app for you.