Patients really like telehealth for its convenience and speedy access—we detail other drivers of high satisfaction

The news: Patients who’ve used telehealth services in the past 12 months were overwhelmingly positive (94%) that they’d use it again, per the JD Power 2022 US Telehealth Satisfaction Study.

Digging into the data: Convenience and fast access are still the main drivers behind telehealth use. Video visits are a major contributor to customer satisfaction.

  • The top reasons why respondents say they turned to telehealth were because of its convenience (61%), the ability to receive care quickly (49%), and the ease of access to health information (28%).
  • 67% accessed video telehealth services in the past year, up from 37% in 2019, the survey said.

Key stat: 94% of patients and their families said they would “definitely” or “probably” use telehealth for medical attention in the future.

Timing is everything: Patients are happy with telehealth for two key reasons:

  1. They felt their doctors spent enough time with them to provide quality care.
  2. They felt things were explained clearly enough that their medical concerns were resolved in a single visit.

But shorter, more transactional tasks make telehealth the go-to modality:

  • 80% of patients prefer telehealth to refill prescriptions, a quick transaction.
  • 72% use it to review medication options.
  • 71% prefer it to discuss test results.

Telehealth use is ticking up again: And that’s even as the pandemic seems to ebb from public view.

The latest Fair Health data shows that 5.3% of all medical claims in July 2022 were for telehealth visits, on par with the 5.4% filed in January 2022.

  • That’s up 27% over July 2021, when 4.2% of claims were for telehealth.
  • For context, April 2020 was the peak month for telehealth, with 13.0% of claims going to telehealth due to lockdowns.

Mental health visits have been a major driver of telehealth visits since the beginning of the pandemic.

  • 57% prefer telehealth for regular mental health visits, per JD Power.
  • Psychotherapy visits of 60, 45 and 30 minutes accounted for 3 of the top 5 diagnostic codes for telehealth visits in July 2022, per Fair Health.
  • Mental health issues were the top diagnoses (63.5%) in July, followed by COVID-19 (4%), Fair Health reported.

Our take: As we predicted in our US Telehealth Trends 2022 report, consumers consider telehealth as just another way to access healthcare services. Providers that offer easy appointment scheduling, transparent billing processes, and quality interactions with patients via video, audio, or text are positioned to retain patients of all ages.