Launching Telehealthclinics.com.au: Find, book and be treated by your favourite doctor within minutes without leaving your home
Fully integrated online healthcare appointment booking system now adds secure Telehealth consults in Australian first “one stop shop” solution
The COVID-19 global health pandemic has led to a seismic shift in Australian healthcare to the point where booking online health appointments and being consulted over technology is now commonplace. It’s a revolution ten years in the making.
Finally, Australians can now book an appointment with their preferred healthcare practitioner and have the private consultation with a few simple clicks on their digital devices and without leaving their homes.
Australian ASX listed digital health group, 1st Group Limited, has launched an integrated end-to-end booking and consultation Telehealth solution, which is being rolled out nationwide. Eligible services now include all GP services and a range of healthcare consults by health care professionals across a range of disciplines, including medical specialists, chronic disease management and mental health.
In addition, today marks the official launch of the “Airbnb” of Telehealth – a national directory of Telehealth clinics in Australia, conveniently located on one website. Powered by MyHealth1st, Telehealthclinics.com.au is purpose built to ensure you know whether your next healthcare appointment with a GP, Optometrist, Specialist, Dentist, Physiotherapist, or other allied health professional can be done via Telehealth.
The number of patients seeking healthcare services has changed dramatically in only two weeks due to COVID-19. GP appointments are down on average 40%, dental down 95%, optometry down 85% and specialists down 90%. Now over 60% of all GP appointments are made via Telehealth. This will increase once GP’s mature in their use of Telehealth. Patients are also seeking out their existing GP’s more than ever over finding a new one - with a significant reduction in new patient appointments from the average of 15% for GP’s to fewer than 5%.
Virtually every part of the healthcare industry has been affected by the pandemic. COVID-19 or “fever” clinics (COVID19clinics.com.au) are swamped. These clinics are well and truly on the front line. Pharmacy online appointments are also up a whopping 2,000% due to the demand for flu vaccinations.
Services via Telehealth are safe, effective and convenient and will limit unnecessary exposure of patients and health professionals to COVID-19, wherever treatment can be delivered by phone or videoconferencing.
1st Group Managing Director and Co-Founder, Klaus Bartosch, said today’s launch marked a tipping point in the widespread acceptance by practitioners and patients on ‘game changing’ healthcare technology.
“We’ve known for years that this breakthrough in Telehealth was not only needed but long overdue. The COVID-19 crisis has forced necessary change on the industry, which is a good thing. There’s been a decade’s worth of reform delivered in under a month. We’ve been advocating for these changes for a long time and it’s pleasing to see both practitioners and patients adapt so quickly,” he said.
“Our platform already supports our customers taking Telehealth appointments with whichever system they may currently be using (e.g. Skype) but many of these systems are not regarded as secure and are not customised for health consultations. 1st Group’s Tservice allows our customers to use an end-to-end encrypted secure Telehealth service that is fully integrated with our platforms and our customers’ practice management systems, simplifying the experience for our customers and their patients.”
The new 1st Group Telehealth product offers customers a range of rich, attractive features:
1st Group estimates that prior to COVID-19, its customers had been conducting in excess of two million face to face appointments a month (booked online or by phone). It is difficult to predict the volume of Telehealth consults, either during COVID-19 or once things return to business as usual, but 1st believes growing consumer familiarity will make Telehealth an accepted and popular method for undertaking all types of consults in Australia.
About 1st Group Limited:
1st Group is an ASX listed digital health company building Australia’s leading health services portal, MyHealth1st.com.au, Australia’s online pet service portal PetYeti.com.au and corporate and government solutions platform GoBookings.com. These integrated platforms provide an easy to use online search and appointment booking service and offer a range of value-added apps and services that facilitate digital patient and customer engagement. We improve lives by connecting consumers to a variety of healthcare services and information anytime, anywhere, so they can get well sooner and stay well longer. To find out more visit 1stGrp.com, MyHealth1st.com.au, PetYeti.com.au and GoBookings.com