3 Tensions in Telehealth and How We Can Resolve Them - MedCity News

Virtual care company Teladoc Health launched new app on Thursday that lets users access its full suite of services in one place. The app is also available in Spanish.

Purchase based in New York Teladoc is a virtual “whole person” care company providing services including primary care, mental health, complex care, condition care and chronic disease management. It works with employers, such as the American Heart Association and AAA Northeast, and health plans, such as UnitedHealthcare and Blue Cross Blue Shield.

Through the new app – which is only available to select customers this month – users can navigate between all of Teladoc’s services, view all of their doctors’ care plans and search for care coordination services to connect with personal providers. Offering a range of services together can have big health benefits for consumers, said Kelly Bliss, president of US Group Health at Teladoc. For example, people enrolled in the company’s chronic care program as well as the mental health program have been shown to lower their A1C levels, improve their blood pressure and achieve weight loss, she said.

“[The app is] front door, but I also think it helps that member navigate,” Bliss said in an interview. “A lot of times people talk about that front door, and the front door only leads to one bedroom. So what I think is important and different about this integrated app is that it’s a gateway and really allows you to navigate in a way that’s personalized to services that are most important to your health.”

All services are offered in Spanish. After realizing there was a gap among the company’s Spanish-speaking users, Teladoc hired more than 100 new Spanish-speaking providers in the past year. It also added new components to its programs, such as expanding its nutrition plan to include foods from consumers’ cultures, Bliss said.

“I would say it’s not just language on the app,” Bliss said. “It’s relatively easy to do, especially for a technology company. We weren’t just trying to add Spanish, we wanted to improve health outcomes for Hispanic members.”

The Spanish language feature is in part what sets the redesigned app apart from what the company previously offered, as well as its additional services for coordinating care and allowing patients to review their care plans in one place. By offering this new app, Teladoc hopes to make it easier for patients to receive care, Bliss said.

“Our mission is to improve the healthcare experience so that it’s more personalized, more convenient, more targeted to the needs of members to achieve better health outcomes… People are sick of five apps that manage different components of their health,” she said.

Other virtual health companies include chronic care companies such as Omada Hello or Virta or telemedicine companies like MDLive.

Photo: Sorbetto, Getty Images

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