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Insurers embracing telehealth

As remote health becomes more popular, payers have been launching telehealth and remote monitoring programs. Highmark has launched one such pilot program, offering virtual physician visits for its members, reported FierceHealthIT. When members have minor illnesses, they can contact a Teladoc physician with access to electronic health records and then receive a call back from the doctor within about 22 minutes. The service, which costs members $38, isn't meant to replace a regular physician and "is set up to ensure members are connected with their regular physician," said Mary Goessler, a Highmark medical director. "We encourage members to seek follow-up care through their primary care physician, if it's necessary."

Meanwhile, Humana has provided its Medicare members with congestive heart failure with interactive remote monitoring devices that allow a registered nurse to track their key vital signs daily. And UnitedHealthcare is funding a remote telemedicine training program that provides technical support for rural and medically underserved clinics and hospitals in California. Article

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