Telehealth Considerations For Developmental Disabilities Organizations During The COVID-19 Pandemic

Have you been able to implement a viable telehealth solution for your developmental disabilities organization since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic?

In a matter of weeks, the spread of COVID-19 has changed the world. Essential organizations, including developmental disabilities organizations like yours, have had to adapt as many of their services as possible to a remote setting.

Have you been successful in implementing telehealth solutions so far?

What Is Telehealth?

Telehealth is the remote alternative to in-person care, utilizing technology so that professionals can work with their patients remotely. Telehealth is particularly relevant right now because it allows you to maintain social distance without entirely ceasing the vital services your organization delivers.

Telehealth And HIPAA

As with any technology in the healthcare sector, a key consideration is compliance. Whereas telehealth was conventionally limited to providing care to those in rural facilities, the guidelines have been altered in light of COVID-19. On March 16, 2020, telehealth services for Medicare beneficiaries were expanded, and a day later, the HSS Office for Civil Rights announced that they would be relaxing their stance on HIPAA compliance related to telehealth services.

Currently, any non-public facing remote communication product is considered compliant for telehealth purposes, so long as you’re still implementing reasonable safeguards to protect patient information.

Which Telehealth Platform Is Right For You?

Even though the guidelines have been relaxed, it’s still recommended that your developmental disabilities organization opt for a HIPAA-compliant communication product. At whatever point the pandemic concludes, the instructions will revert, so you may as well invest in the right solution now. The first two options are:

  1. Zoom for Healthcare: A reliable option that integrates into your technology and workflows with high-quality video, even in low-bandwidth environments, to keep you connected to your patients.
  2. Microsoft Teams: A flexible option with advanced call features, such as team calling, automatic routing, and more, to keep you in touch internally and with the patients you serve.

If, however, you need to implement something quickly, there are various options made compliant under the new guidelines that you can choose:

  • Apple FaceTime
  • Google Hangouts
  • Facebook Messenger Video Chat

Need Assistance Deploying Telehealth?

Please know that you don’t have to manage this on your own during this difficult time. The GO Concepts team is available to assist with the implementation and ongoing support of a HIPAA-compliant communication product.

Like this article? Check out the following blogs to learn more:

A Complete Guide to Working Remotely During the Coronavirus Pandemic

How GO Concepts Can Help During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Three Ways the Cloud Can Save Your Organization Money