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COVID-19 Increases Virtual Care Utilization More Than 1,100%

April 22, 2020

Just like business meetings have moved to Zoom or Skype, the COVID-19 Pandemic is mandating that patients and doctors adapt to virtual care for their routine visits. While this may be a big adjustment for some clinics, the concept of telemedicine is nothing new for thousands of Direct Primary Care clinics; in fact, telemedicine is a major pillar of the value proposition that DPC doctors provide their patients.

 

Since the beginning of March when COVID-19 began to make the daily news, Strada Healthcare has seen a 1,100% increase in the number of virtual visits used across our affiliate clinics on our secure app, Spruce. We believe this large increase in Spruce utilization is driven by a number of factors

 

    1. Patients know the provider on the other end – Having a DPC provider is just like having a doctor in the family. When you have a question or concern, especially in times like these, it is super simple and convenient to pick up the phone and contact them. When Strada Healthcare members use Spruce, the provider on the other end of the phone is the primary care provider they know and have a relationship with.
    2. Providers know the patients who are communicating with them – It shouldn’t come as a surprise that primary care providers can more easily communicate with and treat patients with whom they have already established a visit. Whether a patient is asking them about a prescription refill or concerns over a fever, providers can treat patients with more confidence when there is an established relationship.
    3. Patient retention and provider reimbursement are linked – Unlike today’s broken healthcare system where doctors are only compensated when a patient enters their clinic and uses their insurance, Direct Primary Care doctors are compensated on a monthly basis directly by their patients. Clinics can keep their income consistent by being proactive in their communication with their patients, especially during a time like this.

 

 

Before the COVID-19 pandemic broke out, Americans found value in receiving care from the comfort of their home. Now that nearly everyone is being required to use virtual care, Direct Primary Care providers are leading the way by doing what we already do best.

 

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