Telemedicine providers on campus services realities

Question 1: What are the most common misconceptions about teletherapy services for college students?

“With teletherapy still being relatively new to colleges and consumers, there is often the misconception that this is a new type of healthcare service in itself. But teletherapy is just a means of providing therapy as we’ve known it through a medium that creates more access for more students.”

—Cody Semrau, founder and CEO, BetterMynd

Link to main story: TeleHELP in higher ed

“Common misconceptions about telemedicine are that health professionals cannot accurately diagnose or treat certain illnesses virtually, that the technology is expensive or that the patient’s personal information is more likely to be compromised. Companies that provide telehealth services are held to high standards of data protection and comply with HIPAA regulations.”  

—Dr. Dorsha N. James, president, co-founder, Campus Rx

“First, there are some who believe it is not needed. Sometimes, there may be a mental health provider on the next block, but it may take two months to get an appointment. Another misconception is that patients will not perceive that they are receiving quality services. Studies have shown that patients in today’s age are more concerned with receiving the care they need in a timely manner rather than being in the same location with the provider. Lastly, there is the misconception that it cannot be done well.”

—Tearsanee C. Davis, director, Clinical and Advanced Practice Operations, University of Mississippi Medical Center

Question 2: What does the future look like for teletherapy in higher education?

“I envision that teletherapy will be highly integrated into the mental health services offered in higher education. With more and more college students experiencing mental health challenges, administrations will find teletherapy to be an effective solution in meeting an increasing demand.”

—Cody Semrau, founder and CEO, BetterMynd

“Tele-health (e.g. telemedicine and tele-therapy) will become an integral part of the higher education experience. From virtual student health clinics that treat minor illnesses, to almost ubiquitous access to mental health professionals 24 hours a day, the educational landscape will be greatly transformed. These advances will contribute to the overall health of students, and administrators will be able to breathe a collective sigh of relief that they have been able to avoid the associated costs of improving current services or the financial burden of the development and implementation of such programs.”

—Dr. Dorsha N. James, president, co-founder, Campus Rx

“We see telemedicine as an increasingly popular option for colleges and students. It provides a high quality, affordable and convenient alternative to a visit to a physician office, urgent care facility, retail clinic or ER. Cigna offers two telehealth options, AMWELL and MD Live, as a standard telehealth benefit for most of Cigna’s U.S. employer-sponsored group health plans, as well as many of its individual health plans on and off public marketplace exchanges.”

—Joe Mondy, spokesman, Cigna

Theresa Sullivan Barger is a Connecticut-based writer.


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