Examining Patient Perspectives and Adoption of Telemedicine Since the COVID-19 Pandemic

Sep 23, 2020 | Hospital Solutions

Telemedicine has been slowly making its way into the healthcare realm for years. With COVID-19 rearing its head, the use of the technology has skyrocketed. But by how much? And is it here to stay?


Doximity wanted to find out.


Researchers at the company examined three important aspects of telemedicine’s use as a clinical tool. First, Doximity conducted a comprehensive inventory of patient’s changing attitudes towards, and their experience with, telemedicine as a replacement for in-person visits to the doctor’s office. This was done with a survey of over 2,000 U.S. adults that was fielded on July 20, 2020, shortly after the initial shelter-in place orders were instituted. Additionally, they updated a 2019 telemedicine study, with a year-over-year analysis of Doximity physician member profiles to determine whether there had been growth in doctors self-reporting telehealth as a skill. To understand how physicians are using virtual care tools, Doximity analyzed adoption data from their own telemedicine feature set, which has grown in the first half of 2020 to over 100,000 regular physician users. Lastly, Doximity reviewed recent studies that examined the disparities in medicine, specifically, patient access to telemedicine technology.


Here are the highlights to what they found:


1. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, 86% of Americans had never participated in telemedicine even once, but since the outbreak, that number has decreased by half.



2. In the survey, 28% of respondents said they plan to use telehealth more often,. Furthermore, 27% of respondents said they feel more comfortable using telemedicine since the pandemic.


3. When asked how they felt telemedicine visits fared compared to in-person, 28% of Americans reported they feel telemedicine is the same or better quality of care. What’s more, 53% of patients with chronic illness agree.


4. According to last year’s study, the number of physicians who self-reported telemedicine as a skill was rising year-over-year by 20% from 2015-2018. This year, that number nearly doubled to 38%.


5. While many think that telemedicine is something only younger physicians would use, Doximity found that doctors in their 40s and 50s are using telemedicine more often than their younger colleagues in their 30s. 



6. The analysis found that 24% more women are adopting the use of telemedicine over their male counterparts.


COVID-19 has drastically changed the way we live our lives. And telemedicine has not been exempt. More than ever, telemedicine use is on the rise and it’s showing no signs of slowing down. To read the full report, click here


To learn more about Doximity’s telemedicine solutions and how we can help you reach your goals and connect physicians with their patients, contact us.