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Telehealth coverage on the rise

Posted by Paula Turnquist

With rising healthcare costs now outpacing wage increases across most of the country, the pressure to reduce benefits spending has arguably never been greater. In an effort to drive down costs, employers are now seeking solace in an option that would have been unimaginable just a few years ago: telemedicine.

As many as 80 percent of employers could pay for their workforce to receive medical care from their doctor remotely via the Internet by 2018, according to TowersWatson. While that represents a significant jump from the one-third of organizations that currently offer telemedicine services as part of their employer benefits packages today, a growing number of HR professionals have already expressed interest in adopting the technology in their upcoming healthcare plans. Even more conservative estimations, such as that from telehealth app provider American Well, expect the number of employers that support telehealth programs to more than double over the next two years.

According to an American Well survey published in February, as many as 81 percent of organizations that offer telemedicine programs cited potential savings as the primary driver. These savings can be significant, the company says, as each telehealth visit costs employers just $40, compared to $140 for an office visit and $750 or more for a trip to the emergency room.

Let us s​how you how you can save 15-30% on your company's total medical  costs. 

In addition to saving on your bottom line, adding telehealth options to your benefits package can help you better engage your employees. According to the American Well survey, most businesses that offer telehealth programs say they did so to improve their employees' access to care, keep their workforce happy and help boost productivity across their organization.


So, by adding telemedicine to your benefits package today, not only can you get the jump on a trend that's poised to explode in the coming months, but you could find yourself moving toward a more sustainable healthcare model backed by a healthier workforce.

Posted by Paula Turnquist

Paula Turnquist joined Kelsey-Seybold Clinic in 2013 as sales manager of Employer Products. She is responsible for the sales of products and services ranging from employer group health plans to Executive Health and Occupational Medicine programs. Paula is originally from the Dallas-Fort Worth area and is a Nursing and Health Care Administration graduate of Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. She has worked in healthcare since 1976 serving major hospital systems, physician practices, venture capital start-ups and large insurance carriers.

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Topics: Costs of Employee Benefits

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