Verizon And The VA Have Teamed Up To Help Veterans
Verizon and the US Department of Veterans Affairs, the VA, have partnered to help veterans who are also Verizon customers have access to the VA’s telehealth app “VA Video Connect” that launched in 2017. This app will enable remote consultations with healthcare professionals and with the partnership, the app can be used on a 4G LTE network, without any data charges. Last year, the VA had over one million telehealth consultation and this partnership should help them reach their goals.
What Is Telehealth?
Telehealth is offering health-related services and information via electronic information and telecommunications technologies. Basically, it allows long-distance patient and clinician contact and care.
Why Is Telehealth Important?
Last year, 6 million patients received VA treatment but there are only 170 VA medical centers nationwide. Using telehealth can help expand the care. The VA also wants all of their care providers to be telehealth enabled by the end of the fiscal year 2021. The VA is also concerned about the lack of available care options in rural areas. They hope that a 4G powered telehealth app could help the needs of the 4.7 million US veterans, almost a quarter of all veterans, that are living in rural areas. In addition, of the one million telehealth consultations last year, over half were made by rural veterans.
While the VA has also teamed up with T-Mobile and Sprint on telehealth initiatives, Verizon has performed better than them in many different areas. According to OpenSignal, they have won most of their speed and availability records. They also have won their 4G availability award, which makes them ideal to help veterans receive access to the VA telehealth app.
In addition, offering free 4G access to veterans could be the first step in a larger 5G telehealth future. Only Verizon has a web presence fully dedicated to 5G in healthcare and that could be a very good thing when it comes to veterans and telehealthcare going forward.
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