An expert from Avera Health, one of the largest and best-known telehealth organizations in the nation, weighs in on how to lay the groundwork for a successful virtual care practice. There are more than a few reasons why hospitals across the country choose to implement telemedicine. For some, telehealth can provide a board-certified emergency physician for consultation in the event they need to perform an infrequent procedure. Others rely on telemedicine to support providers, delivering a better work-life balance to clinicians. Many opt for virtual consults with the aim of keeping care local, avoiding unnecessary transfers and offering specialized services. Whatever the reason, telemedicine is much more than a connection between a provider and a patient; it has the potential to save workforces, communities and, most important, patient lives. And the sooner hospitals grasp the idea that this care delivery innovation can be a powerful way to tackle their goals and challenges, the better off they will be.

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