Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, just 11% of US consumers were using telehealth. In 2020, the federal government, states, and private payors lifted previous restrictions on the use of telehealth to enable safe access to health care during the pandemic. Telehealth use increased dramatically.
The United Methodist Health Ministry Fund commissioned research on telehealth in Kansas to understand how it was being used by consumers and providers, and perspectives on areas for improvement.
The research included a statewide survey of health care providers and administrators, as well as in-depth follow-up interviews. In partnership with REACH Healthcare Foundation, the consumer perspective was explored through a statewide voter poll and consumer focus groups.
It was clear from both provider and patient responses that telehealth will continue to be used into the future. Both providers and patients would welcome more standardization, certainty in public policy, expansion of broadband internet (especially in rural areas), flexibility in choosing telehealth or in-person services, and respect for clinical judgment.
Telehealth in Kansas: Provider and Patient Experience During COVID-19 Cross-Study Report
Consumer Focus Groups Find Kansans Want Telehealth to Stay
Telehealth is Here to Stay
New Poll Finds Kansas Voters Want Telehealth to Stay
Telehealth in Kansas During COVID-19
Telehealth Was Key During the Pandemic; Providers Want It To Stay
Telehealth’s Current and Future Role in Patient Care
What we advocate for: Telehealth and digital equity
Patients, providers, and administrators expressed that telehealth increased access to care and saw benefits beyond expanding access during the pandemic.
2021 Provider Interviews
Blog Post | Full Report | Brief
A key finding from 2021 in-depth interviews with health care providers and administrators is that for telehealth to remain viable, future financial support is needed for system upkeep and visit reimbursement.
2021-2022 Consumer Focus Groups
Consumer focus group research demonstrates that telehealth has increased access to care, has room for improvement, and that patients want telehealth to be a permanent option.
Research from late 2020 shows providers and patients benefited from expanded use of telehealth services during COVID-19, especially during the early months of the virus outbreak as in-person visits declined.