The utilization of telehealth systems in the United States and around the world will undoubtedly continue to rise upward. The overall consensus of telehealth in the healthcare industry is that consumers are clearly ready for telehealth in the home. Not only do telehealth services increase patient satisfaction, but they also produce far greater quality outcomes and a reduction in on-site visits, unplanned hospitalizations, and emergency room visits.
The global telemedicine market grew from $9.8 billion in 2010 to $11.6 billion in 2011 and will almost triple to $27.3 billion in 2016, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.6% over the next five years, according to a report from BCC Research.
A closer look at U.S. trends suggests that telemedicine market growth has been driven by the implementation of the Obama administration's Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), a two-year-old law that has intensified the focus on telemedicine as a way to treat an increasing number of people who will be seeking health insurance and medical services. Telemedicine technology enables healthcare personnel to meet this increasing demand without delays in treatment or rationing care, the BCC Research report concludes.
"The growing demand for telehealth reflects the important role telemedicine plays in reducing costs while also increasing quality, access, and satisfaction," the report states. A June 2014 American Medical Association (AMA) report notes that telehealth is being used to 'improve access to care, care coordination and quality, as well as reduce the rate of growth in health spending.' For example, it is estimated that telehealth could deliver more than $6 billion a year in healthcare savings to U.S. companies and yields an 87 percent satisfaction rate.