2020 has been a year unlike any other, thanks to a global pandemic which forced all of us to think of innovative ways to go about life in a safer, more “socially-distanced” manner.
Nowhere is this more evident than in healthcare, where we see an explosive rise in popularity of telemedicine and online health tools to keep Americans healthy in the face of COVID-19.
The Rapid Rise of Telemedicine
Telemedicine is nothing new. It’s been around for quite some time—a sector worth about $38 billion in 2018. Even in the early days, telemedicine’s popularity grew pretty quickly, with visits increasing annually by 261% between 2015 and 2017.1
Thanks to the pandemic, some estimates predict that the telehealth market will experience a “tsunami of growth” in 2020—and up to seven-fold growth by 2025.2
Naturally, in-person medical visits continue to have the upper hand. A lot of people revert to what they know and are used to, namely face-to-face conversations and visits with their doctors, or hands-on physical exams for their ailments or medical issues.
However, the “pandemic life” abruptly changed this standard medical landscape. In the beginning, much of the country was completely shut down for weeks, in some areas even months—including many doctor’s offices.
Even now, some people are still concerned about venturing out—especially to physician offices where a lot of patients (some of them ill) filter through every day. Of course, despite all this, the need for healthcare does not stop.
Thus, telemedicine is now more critical to the practice and delivery of medical care.
When it comes to COVID-19 care, telemedicine proves to be a smart choice for initial consultation. According to a study on telemedicine conducted earlier this year:
“With a home-based video interaction, the patient can have an interaction with a provider, who, in addition to obtaining a thorough history of symptoms and exposure risk, can perform an observational assessment… Clinicians should [then] use their judgment as to whether the patient is appropriate for COVID-19 testing.”3
For patients with chronic conditions who are particularly susceptible to COVID-19, telemedicine serves as a safe and effective alternative to in-person care. Even better, research has shown that these visits are just as effective as face-to-face exams:
“Recent studies have demonstrated similar health outcomes for patients whether delivered in person or synchronously by a remote provider for various conditions including asthma,” as well as diabetes and heart disease.3
Other Online Health Tools
Telemedicine isn’t the only remote health tool being used these days with great success.
Various online tools are now being used by medical professionals to aid in risk assessment, diagnosis, and more. In fact, a recent study found that the use of an online risk calculator can be particularly helpful in predicting risk of stroke.4
Two of the researchers developed an online calculator to assess the severity of metabolic syndrome—a cluster of health factors that increase risk of various diseases, including stroke. These factors are high blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess belly fat, and abnormal cholesterol and triglycerides.
Using scores from their online tool, they determined that white women happened to have the highest association between metabolic syndrome and risk for ischemic stroke.
The researchers hope that this risk assessment tool will help other doctors guide patients to lower stroke risk by addressing metabolic syndrome factors.
This is yet another example of how our medical landscape is evolving and adapting in modern times.
Newport Natural Health’s New Online Health Tool
We recently embraced our own telemedicine model of sorts.
As a supplement retailer, we understand some of the concerns our customers have about their medications and supplements.
- Could the drugs and supplements you are taking interact in any way?
- Are you taking too much—or not enough—of something?
- Are you paying too much for certain drugs?
These are questions that a lot of patients save for their doctor visits. But now you don’t have to.
Our team of licensed pharmacists can help you or an immediate family member determine if you’re getting the best health benefits and value from your medications.
As a loyal Newport Natural Health reader, you can get a FREE Comprehensive Medications Review (CMR)—an easy way to see if you can save up to 75% or more on your medications.
Simply complete the brief questionnaire on our site here and one of our licensed pharmacists will review your medications.
Your CMR pharmacist will provide a detailed list of recommendations for you to share with your doctor, to help lower your monthly prescription costs—it's that simple.,
This free assessment could save you money—in some cases hundreds of dollars. Request your complimentary CMR today.
Tools like Newport Natural Health’s free CMR, telemedicine, and other online health assessments are no longer the future of medicine. They are part of the medical world today.
We hope you embrace some or all these innovations for safe, fast, efficient, and convenient healthcare, for peace of mind, and optimal health
Take good care.
- Lagasse J. Telemedicine is poised to grow as its popularity increases among physicians and patients. Healthcare Finance News. 2019 Jul 16.
- Frost & Sullivan Press Release. Telehealth to experience massive growth due to COVID-19, says Frost & Sullivan. 2020 May 13.
- Portnoy J, et al. Telemedicine in the era of COVID-19. J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract. 2020 May;8(5):1489-91.
- DeBoer M, et al. Risk of ischemic stroke increases over the spectrum of metabolic syndrome severity. Stroke. 2020;51:2548-52.
Disclaimer: Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.
Last Updated: November 11, 2020
Originally Published: November 11, 2020