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U.S. Lags on Adoption of Telehealth, According to Survey of Physicians

March 27, 2017
by Heather Landi
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Only 4 percent of U.S.-based physicians think that their state has done “very well” implementing telehealth technologies and only 15 percent responded “well” when evaluating their state’s efforts to implement telehealth, according to a survey by Sermo.

Sermo is a global social networking platform for physicians founded in 2005. For the survey, Sermo polled its member base of more than 600,000 physicians from 30 countries about how well they think their country has implemented telehealth technologies.

Among U.S.-based physicians, 41 percent of 1,651 respondents think their state has done a “fair” job in adopting telehealth, while 44 percent have negative feelings about their state’s telehealth programs, choosing either “poor” or “very poor.”

Among the largest respondent sample sizes were Ohio, California, New Jersey and New York. According to doctors responding to the Sermo survey, Ohio has implemented telehealth the most effectively (22 percent of doctors responding “well” or “very well”), followed by California (20 percent of doctors responding “well” or “very well”). By contrast, New Jersey ranked among the bottom (59 percent of doctors responding “poor or “very poor”), along with New York (51 percent of doctors responding “poor or “very poor”), according to the Sermo survey data.

Similarly to U.S. physicians, most international physicians (38 percent of 1,831 respondents) said their country has done a “fair” job adopting telehealth. The survey found that 43 percent of international physicians have negative feelings, choosing either “poor” or “very poor” when asked how they think their country has embraced telehealth. Only 19 percent of international physicians rated their country’s telehealth programs favorably, choosing either “well” or “very well.”

Spain was rated as having the best implementation of telehealth (26 percent of doctors responding “well” or “very well”), while the United Kingdom was rated as the worst (62 percent of doctors responding “poor” or “very poor”).

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