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May 27, 2020

Getting the word out about telehealth services.

When educating patients about telehealth and promoting its benefits, it’s important for practices to consider the following:

Start with your providers. Your providers are your best advocates for promoting and educating patients about telehealth services. Face-to-face conversations can ensure buy-in from patients.

Educate your patients. Not everyone is a candidate for telehealth services, nor is every type of care appropriate via telecommunications technologies, so make sure your patients know what’s available. Promote across all platforms. If you have the wherewithal, utilize all your practice’s channels — website, email, text messaging, social media, patient portal, flyers and signage, online advertising, referrals — to educate and inform patients.

Make the appointment process simple. For those patients who are candidates for telehealth services, ensure that they can easily make a telehealth appointment via phone, text or on your website or patient portal.

Recognize your bandwidth. When you first begin to offer telehealth services, you need to determine how many additional patients you can see each day. Will you have to add hours, and if so, can your staff manage the extra scheduling tasks?