- NewYork-Presbyterian has teamed up with Walgreens in an effort to improve access to telemedicine services, the health system announced Monday.
- NYP telehealth will be available to consumers at self-service kiosks at select Duane Read drugstores in New York and through Walgreens’ website.
- The new telemedicine services are part of NYP’s OnDemand suite of digital health services.
Health organizations are ramping up efforts to appeal to patients as consumers, and retail locations are a big part of that trend. It's reflected in the blockbuster CVS-Aetna merger announced a little more than a week ago. Walgreens appears to be an eager partner for health systems looking to expand in this way. Walgreens Boots Alliance has also partnered with Optum's MedExpress to launch a series of urgent care centers attached to the chain's stores.
The NYP kiosks are private secure rooms within the stores and include medical devices such as thermometers, blood pressure cuffs and a dermascope to view skin conditions. Patients can reach board-certified emergency doctors who conduct examinations, diagnose and treat their ailments.
One kiosk is already available in Manhattan, with additional locations slated to launch in 2018.
NYP is one of a growing number of health systems to embrace virtual care. In July 2016, the system launched the OnDemand digital suite. Later that year, NYP added OnDemand digital urgent care and virtual care and this past summer, a pediatric telehealth option.
Three-fourths of healthcare organizations offer or planned to offer telemedicine services in 2017, a recent Foley & Lardner survey shows. That’s a dramatic change from the law firm’s 2014 survey, when 87% of respondents doubted patients would be using virtual care by now. Nearly a third of organizations that track return on investment cited telehealth-related savings of 20% or more.
An increasing share of hospital and health system telehealth programs are also being managed centrally across service lines and care settings. In a Reach Health survey earlier this year, 36% of health professionals said their organization has an enterprise approach to telemedicine. Another 25% reported moving from a departmental to centralized approach.
The top three objectives in offering telemedicine were improving patient outcomes, increasing patient engagement and making care more convenient for patients.
Speaking at an Axios event in Washington, D.C., last week, NYP President and CEO Steven Corwin underscored telehealth’s potential to disrupt healthcare.
This year alone, NYP has performed about 10,000 telehealth visits, Corwin noted. One area that has surpassed expectations is telepsychiatry. “I thought that was going to be something patient’s wouldn't accept,” Corwin said. “Quite the contrary. The Net Promoter Score of the telepsychiatry consult is 95. The Net Promoter Score of Netflix is 75. We are talking about a sea change in the way that we’re delivering care.”