PALO ALTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--HealthTap, the world’s first Global Health Practice providing 24/7 immediate access to 100,000 doctors from query to cure, today announced the first of its kind training and certification in Virtual Care. A new discipline of medicine, Virtual Care is based on rapidly emerging changes in how healthcare is being practiced, delivered, and received. Constituting far more than just “telemedicine” or providing care remotely over video or the telephone, Virtual Care is an entirely new and comprehensive way to practice medicine.
HealthTap today released an online/mobile educational course to train and certify doctors in the necessary skills and capabilities of the new discipline of Virtual Care. Despite exponential growth in Virtual Care delivery, most medical schools, hospitals, clinics, and private practices still lack up-to-date training and certification programs on the best methods for delivering care remotely. HealthTap is leading the effort to train and certify doctors around the world in these new practices.
Traditional ways of practicing medicine are rapidly being complemented and in many cases replaced by Virtual Care. More than 200 million people used Virtual Care services in 2015, and Dr. Robert Pearl, executive director and CEO of the Permanente Medical Group recently stated that Kaiser Permanente, a prominent provider of integrated care serving millions in the US, expects to deliver a greater number of virtual visits than office visits by 2018. As adoption of Virtual Care accelerates, it is essential for both patients and doctors that best practices are established, learned and adopted by doctors everywhere.
Virtual Care uses established and emerging technologies like smartphones, personal computers, and wearables, as well as data and advanced logic to deliver higher quality, more efficient, and safer medical care. It also empowers people to improve their own health and well being. The adoption of Virtual Care by both doctors and consumers is growing rapidly and is an increasingly important part of the continuum of care, helping doctors assess and triage patient needs remotely, provide care appropriately, and refer patients to in-person visits as necessary.
“Offering benefits far beyond telemedicine, Virtual Care gives people access to trusted information created by doctors, such as personalized tips and answers to health questions,” says Dr. Raj Goyal, Director of Physician Education and Medical Affairs at HealthTap. “Virtual Care also provides ubiquitous useful data and tools like automated reminders and health checklists that are available right from patients’ and doctors’ mobile devices and computers 24/7.”
Having delivered care digitally to hundreds of millions of users globally with a network of more than 100,000 U.S.-licensed doctors, HealthTap has unmatched experience in delivering Virtual Care that engages and empowers patients. HealthTap has worked with top U.S. doctors in 141 specialties and subspecialties and has developed best practices to integrate Virtual Care into their clinics, and to help doctors deliver care effectively, compassionately and responsibly to patients everywhere. With the new Virtual Care Certification and Course HealthTap is now sharing what it has learned about all aspects of delivering care virtually, including legal, technological, and behavioral, establishing best practices for doctors everywhere.
HealthTap’s Virtual Care Course and Certification Program is completely free, independently developed, and non-commercial. It provides doctors who successfully complete the course with official Category 1 Continuing Medical Education (CME) credit (required to maintain their licenses), as well as a certification verifying training in Virtual Care. The course is lead by doctors who have also taught in medical schools like Stanford, and Harvard, among other leading medical institutions. A multi-level program, the training is structured around introducing doctors to Virtual Care followed by testing and verifying their knowledge of best practices in this new field. The program also provides advanced-level training, complete with practice hour requirements, certifying that the doctors have real-world experience delivering Virtual Care.
“After more than 30 years of traditional practice, I am seeing a radical transformation in the way care is delivered due to Virtual Care,” says Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge, Chief Medical Officer at HealthTap, and former faculty at Harvard and Stanford University. “Thousands of doctors from all over the world have been continuously asking questions about Virtual Care delivery, and we believe it is our responsibility to develop this new discipline of medicine, and share what we’ve learned using the knowledge we’ve gained in the past 6 years with hundreds of thousands of doctors serving hundreds of millions of people virtually.”
The HealthTap Virtual Care Course and Certification helps doctors understand which medical situations can be handled through virtual rather than in-person care. The program also provides instruction how to deliver high-quality Virtual Care quickly and compassionately. Virtual Care will play an essential role in medicine in the coming years, as demand for care worldwide is exceeding supply. Virtual Care offers a means to bridge this gap while delivering the right care, at the right time, at the right price.
To learn more, visit: https://www.healthtap.com/virtual_care_course/launch or watch an introductory video here: https://www.healthtap.com/goto/virtual_care_course_video
Licensed doctors can take the course for free at: https://www.healthtap.com/goto/virtual_care_course
HealthTap, a World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer, is the world’s first Global Health Practice. HealthTap delivers immediate, world-class healthcare 24/7 from Query-to-Cure™. Through video, voice, and text chat on any mobile device or personal computer, HealthTap connects hundreds of millions of people everywhere with the most trusted health advice from a network of more than 100,000 top U.S. doctors. HealthTap’s proprietary, robust, and secure Health Operating System (HOPES™) and proprietary triaging technology enable healthcare systems, payers and employers worldwide to provide the right care at the right time at the right price. Sign up today and download HealthTap’s free apps for iPhone, iPad, or Android at healthtap.com