According to a new report, almost 88% of Americans want to continue using telehealth for non-urgent consultations after COVID-19 has passed. To assess consumer perspectives of telehealth, as well as how they may have shifted over the course of the pandemic, customer engagement company SYKES polled 2,000 Americans in March of 2021 and compared their responses with previous survey results on the subject from March of 2020. The research found substantial increases in virtual care support and satisfaction as a majority of Americans have now experienced telehealth firsthand. In March of 2020, about 20% of respondents had experienced a telehealth appointment, compared to over 61% in March of 2021. Nearly 80% said they feel it is possible to receive quality care through telehealth visits, and willingness to try telehealth in the future was shown to have jumped from about 60% to 80% as well. The survey also showed positive perceived benefits of telehealth, for instance nearly 86% of respondents say telehealth made it easier for them to get the care they need, and over 31% said their healthcare costs decreased at the same time.
Additional notable information garnered from the survey include the following findings:
- 31% felt their doctor comes across more empathetic via telehealth
- 64% said they’d prefer to have parts of their annual physical done via telehealth
- 74% would be willing to share health data from a digital fitness tracker or smart medical device with their physicians
- 74% believe telehealth appointments will become the norm
Overall, the responses seem to show consumer support and preferences toward telehealth will only continue to grow moving forward. Additional information on the survey and findings can be found on the SYKES report website.