Barriers in providing Telehealth Care
Telehealth is the use of digital Information and Communication technology to access healthcare services remotely, with the use of computers and mobile devices. Telehealth has proved it is advantageous to patients and doctors, especially when access/provision of healthcare is difficult.
Telehealth, though, has its limitations when it involves a lot of equipment and technology which can sometimes end up being costly. It also necessitates some level of training or hiring of staff to handle the equipment. Problems do arise with the equipment which hinders the process of uninterrupted healthcare provision. It also faces problems when the patients are technologically handicapped and they may not be ready to meet the expenditures related to setting up of the equipment needed to provide telehealth.
Various researches also show that, in general, people who make use of telehealth have at least a workable knowledge of the English language and people who have limited English proficiency (LEP) do not find using telehealth easy. So, unless steps are taken to mitigate this problem by giving the patients interpreters while using telehealth services, there cannot be an increase among users with LEP
Therefore, healthcare providers not only have to think about providing healthcare but also ways and plans to make telehealth accessible for patients who have challenges in using it due to cost, technology, or language difficulties.