Planning for Vendor Selection
As you begin on your quest to find the right vendor, let six telehealth practitioners inspire you with their perspective and insights on how organizations should prepare for selecting a telehealth vendor.
What is Telehealth?
“Everybody agreed until somebody defined it.”— Christian Milaster
Before we get started, we wanted to provide some clarity as to the terminology used to differentiate between Telehealth and Telemedicine and also to provide definitions for the specific types of telemedicine:
- Interactive Patient Care
- Remote Patient Monitoring
- Store & Forward
Telehealth Taxonomy & Definitions
To understand the relationships of the various telehealth-related terms, consider the following taxonomy:
Your understanding of this taxonomy will be helpful in your search for vendors, as most vendors only serve one specific type of service, e.g., only for Interactive Patient Care or only for Remote Patient Monitoring.
- Telehealth: Delivering Healthcare at a Distance.
- Telemedicine: Practicing Medicine at a Distance.
- Interactive Patient Care (IPC) Live Video, Chat, or Phone Interaction between a Clinician and a Patient.
- Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) Continuous & Periodic Transmission of Vital Signs.
- Store & Forward (S&F) Asynchronous Transmission of Images, Video, Sound, etc.
- mHealth The use of Mobile Technologies in medical care.
Launching a Telehealth Service
Here are the recommended steps to launch a new telehealth service:
Are you Ready for Technology?
“Are you Ready to Select a Vendor” Checklist:
Review this list to see if you are ready to start looking for vendors.
- “Why Telehealth” Answered by Senior Execs
- Telehealth Governance Established (team & processes)
- Experienced, Multidisciplinary Telehealth Project Team
- Telehealth Service Defined
- Clinical Champion Identified
- Business Case & Clinical Case Documented
- Telemedicine Service Workflow Defined