Thank you for inviting me to share my perspective on telehealth barriers as a physician who is specialized in the care of older adults, people with disabilities, and technology. Much of my clinical experience has been house calls to visit patients who are too frail to leave their home.
Currently I am the Chief Medical Information Officer at the VNA Health Group, a nonprofit with a mission to care for as many vulnerable and underserved patients as possible in their homes and communities.
I have spent more than a decade watching technologies that would be helpful to people with sickness or disability. However, while many telehealth engineering inventions have existed for over a decade, they have been largely unused – not deployed to help patients. These patients could have been your spouse, grandparent, neighbor, or friend. Why isn’t technology that could enhance care not being utilized? It is disheartening to see that federal and state policy and regulatory barriers are preventing patients from receiving the best care that could be available to them.
Let’s think about an analogy for a moment: email – can you imagine doing your job today if you weren’t allowed to use email? (more…)