Physician telehealth usage increased 58% since 2019, survey finds 

The percentage of physicians using telehealth to see patients spiked from 22 percent in 2019 to 80 percent this year, according to Amwell's 2020 Physician and Consumer Survey.  

For the survey, Amwell commissioned Dynata and M3 Global Consulting to conduct an online analysis of more than 2,000 adults and 600 physicians, respectively, about their perceptions on telehealth usage. Both surveys were completed in June 2020.

Four survey findings: 

1. The number of consumers who participated in a virtual visit has almost tripled since 2019, with 59 percent of consumers having their first virtual visit during the pandemic and 91 percent of patients reporting feeling "very" or "somewhat" satisfied with the experience. 

2. Among providers, the percentage of those who have used telehealth since last year has nearly quadrupled, and 84 percent said they were "very" or "somewhat" satisfied with one or more telehealth platforms. 

3. Most physicians (96 percent) said they were willing to use telehealth, with 94 percent interested in applying it toward prescription renewals, 93 percent would use it for regular chronic care management check-ins and 71 percent would use it for follow-up visits after surgery or hospital stays. 

4. During the COVID-19 pandemic, physicians have most frequently cited the following factors as barriers to telehealth adoption: technology challenges (72 percent), uncertainty about reimbursement (64 percent) and questions about clinical appropriateness (58 percent). 

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