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Here are a few things to look for when evaluating any telemedicine software solution.

Security: Since telemedicine software is often used to save, transmit, or share private patient health information, it needs to be 100% secure and HIPAA compliant. Telemedicine software should not be used as general video-conferencing programs like Skype x

Intuitive design: Telemedicine software needs to be easy-to-use for both patients and providers. The best telemedicine software incorporates best practices in user-interface design so that the user experience is intuitive. The more intuitive and simple the design, the less time and training required to get both the healthcare provider and the patient onboard.  

Reimbursement: Many states now allow reimbursement for telemedicine services, especially remote visits done via a two-way video. But to get reimbursed, each telemedicine visit needs to be well-documented. The top telemedicine software solutions allow healthcare providers to easily document the patient encounter and then submit the record for reimbursement. 

Patient records: Patient visits done through telemedicine need to be documented too. Many telemedicine software solutions allow providers to import any visit notes into a patient’s EHR so to keep everything in one place and up-to-date. Some may also integrate with an EHR system for seamless record-keeping. 

E-prescribe: The idea behind telemedicine solutions is to make healthcare delivery more efficient. A process like calling in prescription orders to pharmacies can be time-consuming for healthcare providers. That’s why telemedicine software should include an e-prescribe feature. This lets a physician submit a prescription electronically, without needing to pick-up the phone or contact the pharmacy. 

Minimal set-up: There is a range of telemedicine software solutions out there. Some require extensive set-up and training to learn how to use the program and any accompanying equipment. Some solutions may come with a dedicated telemedicine station and mobile medical devices, whereas others may just need a personal computer with a microphone and webcam. While every healthcare providers’ needs are different, the best telemedicine software should require minimal set-up and training to get started. 

Cost: Telemedicine solutions come in all shapes and sizes. The sophistication of the technology, the equipment, training, set-up, and amount of users required will all affect the cost of a telemedicine service. Healthcare providers should evaluate their budget for telemedicine software and make sure they consider how much training and staff resources they’ll need to implement the telemedicine software. Since telemedicine providers offer solutions for single-provider practices up to huge health systems, there’s always a good fit.