WOONSOCKET, R.I., Aug. 18, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- New data from the CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) Research Institute demonstrates very high levels of patient satisfaction with the quality of care delivered via telehealth at MinuteClinic retail medical clinics. Satisfaction with quality of care and other factors were measured among patients participating in a pilot program of telehealth care rolled out at MinuteClinic locations in California and Texas in 2014, and the findings were published on-line in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.
"In the United States today, approximately a quarter of patients do not have a primary care provider or have incomplete access to one," said William Shrank, M.D., chief scientific officer, CVS Health. "This lack of access, combined with an increased demand for care resulting from expanded coverage under the Affordable Care Act, and the challenge of finding convenient care for patients balancing work and personal responsibilities, necessitate exploration of alternative, high quality care options such as telehealth in the MinuteClinic setting."
The study evaluated de-identified responses from more than 1,700 patients who participated in the MinuteClinic telehealth pilot. Patients had services at a CVS MinuteClinic location, provided by a remote clinician using telehealth technology. Patients were asked if they had health insurance and a primary care provider and rated their satisfaction with a number of measures associated with their telehealth visit, including quality of care and convenience. Patients were also asked to rank their experience of a telehealth visit as compared to that of a traditional visit, when the patient and a health care provider are face-to-face, in the same room. Overall, 95 percent of patients were highly satisfied with the quality of care they received, the ease with which telehealth technology was integrated into the visit, and the timeliness and convenience of their care. In addition, one-third of patients indicated that they preferred a telehealth visit to a visit with a clinician in the same room, in particular those patients without health insurance, and nearly all found telehealth to be just as good as or better than a traditional visit.
"MinuteClinic has long been focused on providing accessible, high quality, affordable health care that is complementary and supportive of the primary care provider," said Andrew Sussman, M.D., President, CVS/minuteclinic, and executive vice president/associate chief medical officer, CVS Health. "Telehealth provides us with an opportunity to offer convenient, high quality care to an extended group of patients and this data confirms that patients are highly satisfied with this new type of health care provider visit."
As a health care provider, MinuteClinic is focused on delivering high quality, accessible care for common illnesses. MinuteClinic is committed to continuity of care, fully supports the physician-led medical home and believes that MinuteClinic can play a complementary role with primary care practices in providing care to patients. MinuteClinic is affiliated with more than 60 major health systems around the country to improve collaboration, integrate medical records and collaborate on chronic disease care.
The CVS Health Research Institute is focused on contributing to the body of scientific knowledge related to pharmacy and health care through research collaborations with external academic institutions, participation in federally-funded research, analysis and sharing of CVS Health data sources and coordination of pilot programs and initiatives. CVS Health Research Institute findings support a continuous quality improvement environment, which encourages product innovation and development to benefit CVS Health patients, clients and their members.
About CVS Health CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its 7,800 retail drugstores, nearly 1,000 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with more than 70 million plan members, and expanding specialty pharmacy services, the Company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable, effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at www.cvshealth.com.
SOURCE CVS Health