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New Study on Effectiveness of Video Telehealth

In a recent article from Pulse+IT, Kate McDonald discusses a Queensland study led by Liam Caffrey and his team at the University of Queensland’s Centre for Online Health, which compares the effectiveness and cost of video conferencing versus telephone consultations in telehealth.


The key findings from the study are as follows:

Clinical Effectiveness: Consultations delivered via video conferencing were found to have equal or better clinical outcomes compared to telephone-only conferences across various clinical specialties.

Patient Engagement and Retention: Video conferencing was associated with better patient engagement and retention, particularly in programs such as smoking cessation and substance use treatment, as well as in community services for older adults’ well-being.

Transfer Decisions: Video conferencing was noted to improve transfer decisions, especially in cases where visual assessment aids diagnosis and management, such as wound assessments or mental health evaluations.

Cost Effectiveness: Despite the higher incremental cost of video conferencing compared to telephone consultations, VC was found to be more cost-effective. This was attributed to reductions in patient transfers and acute care utilisation.

Service Outcomes: While some studies reported service outcomes favouring telephone consultations, such as lower recall rates for paramedics, video conferencing was consistently found to be superior or equivalent for clinical outcomes.

The study provides useful guidance on when to choose video conferencing over telephone consultations, suggesting conditions such as when visual assessment assists with diagnosis and management, non-verbal cues aid in mental health assessments, or when patients prefer video communication.


Coviu is a leading platform offering both telehealth modalities

Coviu is a leading telehealth platform that offers both video and phone telehealth consultations. Coviu provides a versatile solution that aligns with the findings of the Queensland study, facilitating effective and cost-efficient healthcare delivery through video conferencing while also offering telephone consultations when appropriate.


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Video conferencing more cost- and clinically effective than telephone: study - Pulse+IT





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