Could rise in telehealth reflect the future of workplace benefits?
When workplaces went hybrid, so did healthcare. In this briefing we ask whether telehealth services will become a key part of the future of workplace benefits.
Since the onset of Covid-19 the provision of telehealth services has skyrocketed. GPs and other medical professionals provide medical advice and prescriptions online, using video calls and telephone conversations to communicate with patients.
The benefits of telehealth provisions are clear: they can reduce contact between people in GPs surgeries and hospitals, keeping vulnerable people safe whilst also reducing waiting times and the high costs of in-person healthcare.
Insights from research organisation J.D. Power states that 67 per cent of people surveyed had accessed some kind of telehealth services in the last year, which up from 37 per cent pre-pandemic. Out of those who accessed the services, 94 per cent would recommend telehealth services, suggesting that people have an overwhelmingly positive view of telehealth in general.
‘The main reason that telehealth has had such a positive reaction relates to convenience’
The main reason that telehealth has had such a positive reaction is related to the convenience, with 61 per cent of people stating that this was their main reason for liking the services provided. Second in line was the ability to receive medical attention quickly, with 49 per cent citing this as their main reason; finally, ease of access to health information was the third most significant factor, with 28 per cent stating this was the biggest factor.
Telehealth could also make a difference to mental health services, making it cheaper and more convenient for people, increasing the accessibility of mental health services and making it easier for people who are struggling to access the support they need.
So, what does this mean for the workplace in the new hybrid scenario?
With more and more companies taking the health and wellbeing of their staff seriously and providing some form of wellness initiative to employees within the company, telehealth may be the key workplace benefit of the future.
With telehealth services, medical professionals can speak to more patients per day than normal so their services are more cost efficient and less resource heavy. This means that it can be less expensive than other forms of private healthcare.
Workers can also take these calls from the comfort of their own home, reducing their need to be away from the office for lengthy appointments. Therefore, telehealth is cost and time-effective for organisations to invest in. It also likely to prove a popular benefit with employees.
Services that can boost employee health and mental health are likely to have a knock-on effect on staff productivity, as a healthy, happy and motivated workforce are more likely to do their best work.
‘As we enter an economic downturn, private healthcare outside of work becomes increasingly unaffordable…’
Not everyone welcomes remote engagement with health advice – some conditions require face-to-face interaction with medical professionals. But as we enter a period of economic downturn where private healthcare outside of work becomes increasingly unaffordable, telecare benefits are likely to become more prized and contribute to staff recruitment and retention
Paris on parade
If you’re interested in the issues discussed in this WORKTECH Wednesday Briefing, check out WORKTECH’s global events calendar.
The WORKTECH conference returns to Paris on Thursday 1 December 2022 with a conference at the Haworth showroom. Keynote presentations include Luca Bussolini of Carlo Ratti Associati on ‘The Spark of Innovation: The Importance of Co-location in the New Digital Age’ and Hans Scholten of Capgemini on implementing a global smart building solution. Book your place for WORKTECH Paris 2022 here.