- Teladoc's total membership increased by 55% to reach 17.5 million in 2016, its latest earnings report shows.
- The telemedicine company's revenue grew by 59%, totaling $123.2 million last year, though it also reported a full-year net loss of $74.2 million vs. $58.0 million in 2015.
- Teladoc CEO Jason Goveric stated the company executed its "key financial and strategic objectives" and strengthened its "product portfolio to drive further consumer engagement and the overall inflection point in telehealth adoption."
Strong membership and revenue growth for Teladoc signals continued interest in the capabilities of telemedicine.
In 2016, Goveric told Healthcare Dive the growth of its telehealth visit volume "has been explosive." He attributed it to tremendous adoption among employers or health plans and now hospital systems, as well as better consumer engagement.
As increasing access to care becomes more of a priority for both care providers and health insurers, telemedicine adoption is expected to continue to increase. The service has become more of "an expectation of consumers," Sarah Sossong, director of the Center for Telehealth at Massachusetts General Hospital, recently told Healthcare Dive. According to Sossong, there are seven steps that providers can take to build their own telemedicine practice, starting with aligning the approach to a specific strategy.
However, states have shown mixed progress with adoption and coverage, a new report from the American Telemedicine Association revealed. The state in which Teladoc is headquartered – Texas – has a composite grade of "C" because it requires a face-to-face visit with a patient before a care professional can provide telemedicine services. The company had been involved in a lawsuit against the state's medical society, arguing for the requirement to be removed because it limits access to care.
Some of the barriers that are likely to be tackled in the near future given the proven benefits of using telemedicine to treat patients remotely, which is particularly useful in rural areas in which access has substantially decreased due to a large number of hospital closures, include reimbursement and regulatory issues.