ATLANTA, April 6, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Sharecare, the digital health company that helps people manage all their health in one place, today announced the launch of Sharecare Telehealth, a comprehensive HIPAA-compliant solution that instantly enables providers, practices and health systems of all sizes to care for their patients remotely. In an effort to help healthcare providers – such as physicians, advanced degree nurses, mental health providers and pharmacists – better support their patients' well-being during the novel coronavirus pandemic, the digital health company also is making Sharecare Telehealth available for free through September 1, 2020,1 to healthcare providers in the U.S. that sign up by June 1.
"In the face of this pandemic, we have accelerated our product roadmap to bring solutions to market that will advance our vision to 'Sharecare-enable' health systems and healthcare professionals, and alleviate some of the burden falling on them while also helping people across the country access care from the comfort and safety of their homes," said Jeff Arnold, founder, chairman and CEO of Sharecare. "As we rapidly respond to the critical well-being needs of all individuals, organizations and health plans using our platform, we also are working to jumpstart adoption of Sharecare Telehealth for those that need it most, starting with the more than 6,000 physician practices, clinics and health systems across the country that already partner with Sharecare."
Based on more than 75,000 completions of the "Flatten the Curve" survey – which Sharecare developed in partnership with Dr. Sandro Galea, dean of the Boston University School of Public Health, to better understand community well-being and behavior change during the COVID-19 pandemic – 42% of Americans feel that the pandemic has negatively affected their healthcare access in some way, with nearly 60% noting they would still want to access care with their primary physician if they experienced COVID-19 symptoms. Additionally, according to the Sharecare Community Well-Being Index and data from Area Health Resources, the U.S. faces serious healthcare access challenges apart from the pandemic with 33% of all counties in the U.S. having only one M.D. per 2,000 residents; 44% of all counties without a pediatrician; and 48% with no OB-GYN.
"As a physician and public health advocate, I am steadfast in the belief that better health should be within reach for all, and the care that enables it should be easy to use and affordable," said Dr. Galea. "Now more than ever, we must think differently about how we deliver on that promise, not only in our mitigation and treatment of COVID-19 but also in terms of how we enable all people to access healthcare services, from primary care to mental health. Tools like Sharecare Telehealth can provide Americans with a safe, easy way to access healthcare during these unprecedented times, while laying the groundwork for innovative approaches to healthcare access through telemedicine going forward."
Empowering providers to safely and conveniently address patients' important healthcare needs remotely, Sharecare Telehealth – powered by Updox – is an easy-to-use, HIPAA-compliant web-based platform featuring:
- Video chat: Allows patients and care team members to connect face-to-face without the need for expensive equipment or complex training. Accessible anywhere with internet service, this easy-to-use solution provides for the safe, effective, convenient treatment patients expect.
- Secure text: Enables practices to eliminate wasted time playing phone-tag and communicate with patients the way they want to be reached through HIPAA-compliant secure text, even allowing forms, pictures and videos to be transmitted.
- Sharecare-enabled: Practices that also elect to offer Sharecare's personalized well-being platform to their patients will empower them to manage their health every day; and, through Sharecare's robust messaging capabilities, directly engage those patients in telemedicine and other clinically validated services, strengthening the patient-provider connection during these uncertain times.
Sharecare also will work directly with registered healthcare providers should they need assistance to set up Sharecare Telehealth, implement best practices for telehealth visits, conduct training, and provide first-level implementation support.
"Technology is enabling Americans to connect directly with their healthcare providers in ways we've never witnessed previously; and a couple of years from now, we will look back on this as a watershed moment – one in which digital health went from Blockbuster Video to Netflix overnight," said Arnold. "As the government has acted quickly to expand coverage for telehealth, we remain committed to fostering a safe and secure environment for all of our partners and users while also accelerating innovation so everyone can join the fight to flatten the curve."
Sharecare Telehealth is the latest of numerous tools and resources Sharecare has developed to better inform Americans about COVID-19 and empower them to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus, while easing the strain on healthcare providers – from independent primary care practitioners to large hospital systems. To access Sharecare's latest content and tools for COVID-19 preparedness, awareness and prevention, visit sharecare.com/covid19 or download the free Sharecare app on the App Store or Google Play.
For more information about Sharecare Telehealth, visit www.sharecare.com/telehealth.
Committed to simplifying the business of healthcare, Updox offers a comprehensive telehealth solution as part of its all-in-one collaboration platform. Named for the past five years to the Inc. 5000 list of America's fastest-growing private companies, Updox is integrated with more than 100 electronic health records (EHR) and pharmacy management systems and serves more than 420,000 users and 170 million patients. Updox offers a broad set of capabilities for patient engagement, provider communications and internal productivity that work together in a secure, easy-to-use collaboration platform. Solutions specific to telehealth include HIPAA-compliant Video Chat, Secure Text and SMS text. Updox was created specifically for the out-of-hospital market and gives customers access to a growing platform that focuses on solutions and services to make everyone delivering healthcare happy. Learn more at www.updox.com or follow the company on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.
Sharecare is the digital health company that helps people manage all their health in one place. The Sharecare platform provides each person – no matter where they are in their health journey – with a comprehensive and personalized health profile where they can dynamically and easily connect to the information, evidence-based programs and health professionals they need to live their healthiest, happiest and most productive lives. In addition to providing individual consumers with direct access to award-winning and innovative frictionless technologies, scientifically validated clinical protocols and best-in-class coaching tools, Sharecare also helps providers, employers and health plans effectively scale outcomes-based health and wellness solutions across their entire populations. To learn more, visit www.sharecare.com.
1 Providers can cancel Sharecare Telehealth at any time without penalty. After Aug. 31, 2020, participating providers can continue to use Sharecare Telehealth month-to-month for a fee.