Telehealth has become a vital part of healthcare delivery, a cost-effective and patient-centered tool enhancing the overall quality of a health system’s care. Already, more than half of American hospitals offer telehealth care to their patients, with 7 million patients expected to receive telehealth care by 2018.

Yet the fact that telehealth is now mainstream doesn’t mean that implementing a telehealth service is easy. Health-system administrators looking to add telehealth to their services still need an implementation strategy. Without such a strategy, a telehealth program may never get off the ground or, if implemented, achieve its potential.

This white paper takes a high-level look at the telehealth landscape—what telehealth is, how quickly it’s being adopted, the ways telehealth benefits hospitals and patients, and some of the challenges health systems may encounter in implementing a telehealth service. Finally, we offer health-system leaders a framework to help them successfully implement a telehealth solution in their organization.

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