Primary care video visits are convenient and may improve the patient-provider relationship, according to a research letter published online April 30 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Mary E. Reed, Dr.P.H., from Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, California, and colleagues surveyed adult patients with a scheduled video visit to examine their experience. A total of 1,274 patients participated in the study, and of these patients, 1,163 self-reported a scheduled video visit.
The researchers found that 67 percent of those who scheduled a video visit needed to make one or more arrangements to attend an in-person office visit. Reasons for scheduling a video visit included convenience (87 percent) and visit experiences (92 percent reported provider familiarity with history and 84 percent reported an improved patient-provider relationship). Barriers to video visits included privacy concerns (11 percent) and preferring in-person care (41 percent). Overall, 82 percent of the 1,163 respondents who self-reported a scheduled video visit completed the visit. Sixty-two percent of the patients who did not complete the visit communicated with the clinician in some other way, 12 percent changed their mind or their health issue resolved, and 26 percent reported technical barriers. Thirty-three percent of patients who completed a video visit reported that it decreased the number of in-person office visits for the same condition, while 53 and 5 percent reported no change and an increase, respectively.
"Integrated video telemedicine may be a transformative tool in increasing patient-centered access to health care," the authors write.
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