2016 Telehealth Predictions

January 18, 2016 by InTouch Health

While some industries (like the petroleum business) are likely to have a dismal year ahead, the future has never been brighter for telehealth.

Here are some bold predictions from telehealth expert René Quashie, senior counsel in the healthcare practice at law firm Epstein Becker Green:

Strong momentum for licensure compacts – The Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) recently introduced an interstate physician licensure compact that 12 states have already enacted. And the National Council of State Boards of Nursing now has a draft compact that allows nurse practitioners to practice in any participating state with just a single license. Look for similar compacts to emerge in 2016.

Big Business buys in – According to the National Business Group on Health, 74 percent of large employers are expected to offer telehealth services in 2016 – up from 48 percent last year.

Telehealth accreditation takes off – Based on the groundbreaking accreditation programs from ATA and the Utilization Review Accreditation Commission (URAC), Quashie anticipates that health systems, health plans and telemedicine companies will develop additional telehealth accreditation programs in the year ahead.

Wearables market gains traction – Quashie notes that Soreon Research projects that the healthcare wearables market will hit the $41 billion mark by 2020. That will make it easier for telehealth clinicians to monitor conditions like diabetes, sleep disorders and cardiovascular disease.

Legislative progress continues – In 2015, more than 200 telehealth bills were introduced in 42 states. Look for more landmark legislation in the year ahead.

When you read Quashie’s full 2016 outlook, one thing is clear: telehealth is ringing in the New Year with industry-wide optimism.