Telerehabilitation driven by the COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the need and advantages of receiving medical care remotely. It has become a relevant tool with technological advances that allow to extend the reach and optimise the results on a daily basis. Telerehabilitation offers patients the possibility to receive rehabilitation treatment from the comfort of their homes, which reduces costs, mobility barriers and improves adherence to treatment.
In this article, we will explore the different business models offered by digital rehabilitation, as well as strategies to optimise its profitability through a platform specialised in patient care and efficient billing.
Digital rehabilitation business models
- Hybrid business model: combines face-to-face medical care with remote medical care. In this case, telerehabilitation can be used as a complement to extend therapy. Patients start by attending the hospital or clinic for a face-to-face diagnosis, then start rehabilitation with face-to-face sessions, and then continue with remote sessions before a final face-to-face assessment. Telerehabilitation allows full monitoring of therapy and avoids unnecessary travel for patients, especially when they do not require direct intervention. Another variant of the hybrid model is to intersperse face-to-face sessions with remote sessions during treatment.
What are the advantages of the hybrid telerehabilitation model?
- Personalisation: Hybrid rehabilitation allows treatment to be tailored to the individual needs of each patient. Some sessions may require direct physical intervention, while others can be conducted remotely.
- Real-time monitoring: Therapists can monitor patients’ progress both during face-to-face sessions and via remote technology, giving them a more complete picture of their progress.
- Flexibility and efficiency: Hybrid rehabilitation provides flexibility to adapt to changing patient circumstances and allows for an effective combination of face-to-face and remote therapy, maximising time and resources.
- Serving more patients: This model allows centres to operate more efficiently and reduce waiting lists.
- Cost savings: Efficiency in management leads to cost savings for centres.
- 100% online model: 100% remote rehabilitation refers to a model in which patients receive therapy and follow-up completely virtually, without the need to physically attend a clinic or rehabilitation centre. This approach uses technologies such as video conferencing, mobile applications and wearable devices to provide therapy, monitoring and follow-up.
What are the advantages?
- Accessibility: Remote rehabilitation removes geographical barriers and allows patients to access rehabilitation services regardless of their location. This is especially beneficial for those who live in rural areas or have mobility limitations.
- Convenience: Patients can conduct rehabilitation sessions from the comfort of their home, avoiding travel and reducing associated stress.
- Flexible scheduling: Remote rehabilitation offers the possibility of scheduling sessions at times convenient to the patient, making it easier to reconcile with other daily responsibilities.
The 100% online rehabilitation model also faces certain challenges that we cannot lose sight of, such as: lack of direct physical contact and the direct physical intervention that some patients need in certain types of therapy.
As well as, the need for technological skills. Some patients may face difficulties in adapting to the technologies used in remote rehabilitation, which may affect their experience and outcomes.
How to make digital telerehabilitation profitable?
Charge for access to the platform: In addition to the usual cost, a separate payment can be considered through a one-off or monthly fee, depending on the recurrence of the patient. It is important to stick to a fair and competitive price to build customer loyalty.
Offer subscription plans: To appeal to a wider audience, different subscription plans can be offered to suit different budgets and patient needs. These plans can be an additional cost or an add-on to current fees.
Offer additional services: To increase revenue, you can include personalised training programmes, personalised exercises for each patient, maintenance exercises, among others. It is important to be creative and think of the patient’s benefit to achieve predictable and consistent revenue.
Differentiate yourself from the competition: Find your own method or offer established methodologies to differentiate yourself from the competition. Generating content and promoting your services through social media or platforms such as Google can be an excellent way to get a return on your investment and efforts.
Clinical results of implementing telerehabilitation based on business models:
Our digital rehabilitation platform, ReHub, has enabled the implementation of both business models in hospitals, insurers and clinical centres. The results obtained support their effectiveness and benefits. Both the hybrid models, which combine face-to-face and remote care, and the 100% online model, have shown a reduction in face-to-face therapies, an increase in treatment adherence (over 60%) and high levels of patient satisfaction (over 4 out of 5). In addition, telerehabilitation has contributed to the reduction of waiting lists in hospitals, as evidenced in the case of the Vall d’Hebron Hospital with a 15% decrease.
In our Ebook “Success Stories” you can find more details about the models and benefits obtained by each client.
In conclusion, digital telerehabilitation offers positive clinical outcomes, improves accessibility, personalisation, motivation and adherence to treatment. It provides immediate feedback to both the patient and the practitioner and is a cost-effective option. By implementing appropriate strategies to make it cost-effective, digital telerehabilitation can be a successful tool from both a clinical and business perspective.