The quality performance of primary care provided through telehealth is comparable to in-person visits, suggesting there is value in using remote testing and screenings to augment patient care, according to a recent report.
In 13 of 16 medication, testing and counseling-based measures part of the Health Care Effectiveness Data and Information Set, exposure to telemedicine was associated with similar or significantly better quality performance.
Higher quality scores for telemedicine prove that remote care is worth the cost of reimbursement, just like in-office care, said Dr. Derek Baughman, corresponding author of the study and medical director at Barksdale Air Force Base and Medical Clinic.
“This isn't just one or two measures, it's showing that for most of the measures, we're providing at least comparable quality,” he said. “We're not making these measures worse.”
Published in JAMA Network Open, the study includes more than 500,000 patients across 200 outpatient care sites in Pennsylvania and Maryland who either had exposure to telemedicine or only had in-person visits between March 1, 2020, and November 30, 2021.