Over the last few years, telemedicine services have become one of the biggest innovations to the healthcare system. Commonly used for follow-up visits and treatment of chronic conditions, telemedicine provides a convenient approach to patient care. As a result of these benefits, sleep apnea treatment is changing. Patients no longer have to make frequent doctor visits in order to make adjustments to their care or to interpret their CPAP therapy results. Patients can receive consultations from their sleep specialist, and even get a home sleep test ordered, without leaving the comfort of their home.
What are Telemedicine Services for Sleep Apnea?
Sleep telemedicine services offer customized and individually designed programs to assist, motivate, and coach PAP therapy patients. Sleep specialists conduct personalized one-on-one care through live-call coaching and remote ongoing sleep apnea support. Patients are able to schedule these consultations at a time that is convenient and sign online from anywhere. That means no time off work, no nights in a sleep clinic, and no copays for multiple in-office visits.
How Does Telemedicine Improve Quality of Care?
The convenience of telemedicine allows a more robust patient outreach, which helps improve care overall. Patients and sleep doctors can engage through emails, calls, texts, and video chat on topics ranging from education and motivational reminders to support for healthy lifestyle changes.
Research into the effectiveness of telemedicine for sleep apnea shows patients appreciating the convenience. More than 95% of the interviewed patients in a telemed study were satisfied with the teleconsultation, and 66% of them answered that the teleconsultation could replace 50%-100% of their CPAP follow-up visits.1
Telemedicine has been shown to improve CPAP compliance. With the ability to interpret sleep test data or request a prescription update without the need to visit the doctor’s office, more people are likely to begin or continue on sleep therapy.
Benefits of Telemedicine for Patients and Providers
Telehealth benefits patients by saving time. Patients can receive a sleep apnea diagnosis through a home test, rather than spending time getting the same results at a sleep center. No need to make alternate care arrangements for children or pets or wait indefinitely until an appointment is available. Patients also cut back on doctor office visits and the copays that go with them. They are able to receive necessary information remotely using telemed communication. For sleep doctors, this means the opportunity to provide more focused care on patients.
Sleep Telemedicine Benefits for Patients
Control of Infectious Illness
Doctors should use telehealth appointments to prescreen patients for probable infectious disease to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, flu, and other infectious diseases. It also eliminates the need for sick people to visit the office. Everyone benefits from less exposure to other people’s germs, especially those who are chronically ill, pregnant, elderly, or immunocompromised.
Telemedicine may make it easier for people to get the preventive care that will help them live healthier lives in the long run. This is particularly true for people with disabilities who face financial or geographic barriers to receiving quality care. Other groups, such as older adults, those who are physically isolated, and those who are incarcerated, may benefit from it as well.
Some specialty practitioners may benefit from telemedicine because they can see you in your own home. Allergists, for example, may be able to spot triggers in your environment that cause allergies. Neurologists, physical therapists, and occupational therapists should evaluate your ability to navigate and care for yourself at home. Telemedicine may also be used for mental health evaluations and therapy.
You can better manage your therapy, lifestyle, and any chronic conditions you may have if you can see your doctor as often as you need to without the hassles of going into the office.
Given this list, it’s no surprise that people are looking for healthcare providers who can deliver telehealth convenience and cost savings. It’s on track to have a significant positive effect on the entire healthcare system, and it’s ready to make your life a little simpler.
Sleep Telemedicine Benefits for Healthcare Providers
Sleep Telemedicine Improves Provider Satisfaction
It can be difficult and stressful to work as a healthcare provider in today’s world. By making it easier to meet with patients, telemedicine can increase work satisfaction. Telemedicine allows providers to better balance their work and personal lives.
Reduced Overall Expenditure
Telemedicine services may result in lower overall expenditure for providers. They may, for an instance, be able to pay less for front desk assistance or invest in an office space with lesser rooms.
Does Medicare Cover Sleep Telemedicine?
In most instances, Medicare will cover a portion of the amount owed for telehealth visits. Usually this amount is the same that is covered for in-person visits. Of course, we recommend talking to your doctor or health care provider directly to determine if they will cover certain telemedicine services.
Sleep Care Online does not partner with any insurance providers and is an out-of-pocket service.
How Does Telemedicine Work for Sleep Apnea?
For those wondering if they have the symptoms of sleep apnea, getting a proper diagnosis is the most important step. With Sleep Care Online, patients can schedule consultations with their doctor, receive a referral for a home sleep test and go over sleep study results anywhere. If diagnosed, Sleep Care online connects patients with a sleep expert to discuss customized equipment recommendations.
Start with a Risk-Free Assessment
Take this free 1-minute risk assessment questionnaire to see if you are at risk for sleep apnea. Have questions about getting started? Our customer care staff is available to call at 866.465.4478 or email at email@example.com
Home sleep apnea tests and telehealth services are now available nationwide.
- US National Library of Medicine. Telemedicine-Based Approach for Obstructive Sleep Apnea Management: Building Evidence. 2014 Feb 19.