Discussions about healthcare accessibility are not new, and have gotten more attention since the beginning of this pandemic. More people started needing medical care, so there had to be a solution for the healthcare system and professionals to deal with the bigger demand. This was when “virtual medicine” came in. This new method started to be offered by Brazilian health insurance companies, and patients’ approval shows the reason behind telemedicine’s success in Brazil.
A research conducted by a telemedicine platform, along with one of the biggest research institutes in Brazil, showed that 41% of Brazilians approve of telemedicine. In total, 801 people from all over the country were interviewed, and 41% of them confirmed they think it’s a great option for an emergency.
The research also showed that 73% of the patients who had these virtual appointments would do it again frequently, especially during quarantine. This is probably because of how convenient and easy it is to “go to the doctor” without leaving the house. Another reason might be the fact that some people are still being careful and not going out so much, even with the beginning of vaccination against covid-19.
Of all medical specialties, mental and nutritional health were the ones patients looked for the most. 32% of all patients looked for general practitioners, then 28% needed psychologists and 9% wanted to see a nutritionist.
As for the doctors, 68% of them affirmed telemedicine improves access to healthcare, which is why they see it so positively. This shows that telemedicine’s success in Brazil is, in part, due to doctors as well. Also, more than half of them believe telemedicine will be prioritized in the near future because of how difficult it is to find specialists in remote areas. So, with the help of technology, patients living in distant areas have easier and cheaper access to specialists who were previously unavailable or hard to reach.
Telemedicine obviously already existed before this pandemic, and some specialists believe it would become popular with time either way. But the current pandemic accelerated this process, proving once again the importance of technology and constant adaptation in every industry. This is what we do at Smart Health, our healthcare specialized division. We collect data and provide all the insight so our partners will always be in tune with the latest and best practices, to achieve all of their goals in the Healthcare industry.