2020 changed a lot about the way we live and do business. Healthcare was not exempt from the slew of changes. In fact, one of the most significant and possibly most lasting changes was the popularity of Telehealth. Indeed, consumer adoption of Telehealth increased 400 percent in 2020. It’s popularity likely won’t be short-lived since a vast majority of consumers plan to use Telehealth options moving forward.
However, there are holes in adoption that should give companies pause. As with any new advancement, certain groups are reluctant to adopt the change. Therefore, companies should ensure a Telehealth offering is effective for its workforce. Here are a few ways you can make sure Telehealth adds value to your benefits offering.
Review the Solution for Quality
Since Telehealth quickly rose in prominence, many telemedicine providers may not be effective options. Therefore, companies should take time vetting a new or existing Telehealth provider. Review the solution from an employees’ perspective. How is the user experience and access to physicians? Companies should also evaluate the technology capabilities and care outcomes. Ideally, the solution facilitates shorter wait times, enjoyable appointments, and effective treatment results. If the solution can’t provide details on outcomes, be sure to consult employees. In fact, checking on employee satisfaction levels with the solution should be a critical component of the review.
Consider the Needs of Your Workforce
It’s unlikely that all of your employees are interested in Telehealth. In fact, studies suggest that there are several factors that make it less likely for a consumer to use Telehealth solutions. Things like household income, primary language, and race all play a part in someone’s willingness to use telemedicine. Therefore, companies should evaluate their workforce and determine how to best serve the group.
Depending on the makeup of a workforce, companies might need to be incredibly intentional about the education of and marketing plan for Telehealth options. Consider barriers that may exist for employee adoption. Then, address those potential barriers not only with the selected solution but the plan to introduce and train on the solution as well.
Create a Telehealth Communication Plan
Whether or not your telemedicine offering is new to employees, create a plan to educate them on it. Benefits can be overwhelming and confusing, even without a technological component. Work to make sure employees not only understand how to access their telemedicine solution but why they should do so. Telemedicine makes healthcare easier to access for many. It’s also a great way to reduce the amount of time needed for appointments. Indeed, reducing travel expense and time waiting in at a doctor’s office may be big advantages for employees.
If education isn’t enough and you face low adoption, take a different route. Consider setting up dedicated workstations with access to the technology needed for an appointment. Companies could also consider an incentive for attending a first, annual, or quarterly telemedicine appointment.
Evaluate the Offering
As always, be sure to consistently check in with employees. Your benefits should add value and increase employee satisfaction and productivity, so make sure it’s working. A virtual employee engagement solution can help collect data. Solutions like Benefits Zone collect valuable employee engagement insights for companies to review and inform benefits packages. Click here to learn more how engagement insights can make your benefits more effective.