A pair of partnerships announced this week at the American Telemedicine Association's 2014 conference and exhibition are showcasing the potential of kiosks in the provider space.
HealthSpot's projects with the Cleveland Clinic and Kaiser Permanente give the Dublin, Ohio-based telehealth company a significant foothold in the push to connect providers with patients outside the office – in what are called "non-traditional healthcare settings." The 8-by-5-foot kiosks are designed to give consumers a private videoconference-based interaction with a doctor, complete with access to diagnostic tools and electronic medical records, and are being positioned everywhere from large businesses and retail locations to community centers, universities, clinics and even some hospital emergency departments.
The key, says Lisa Maughan, HealthSpot's vice president of marketing, is not only to give consumers easy access to healthcare services, but to also offer providers an opportunity to connect with patients – both their own and potential new ones – when and where they need healthcare. These visits also pull people out of waiting rooms, enable quicker care for conditions that don't require a face-to-face visit and free up doctors' time to focus on the more acute cases.
[See also: ATA conference shines spotlight on care delivery.]
HealthSpot and the Cleveland Clinic have announced plans to form a joint venture that would see HealthSpot kiosks deployed in a number of locations. The two organizations launched a pilot last May in which kiosks were placed in three local family centers. Company officials say the kiosks received an overall 93 percent satisfaction score from patients.
During a tour of the technology at the ATA conference, Maughan explained that consumers could access their own doctor or pick from a list of local physicians for either a real-time consult a scheduled appointment. In Cleveland, for example, the kiosks would provide access to Cleveland Clinic physicians and integrate with the health system's medical record.