DefinitionPercentage of Utah adults (18+) utilizing telehealth
NumeratorNumber of Utah adults reporting telehealth services
DenominatorTotal number of Utah adults
Data Interpretation IssuesThe BRFSS is a telephone survey (with interviews using both landline and cell phones) that includes only adults 18 and over.
Why Is This Important?Telehealth (also known as telemedicine) lets healthcare providers provide care without an in-person office visit. In-person office visits with a healthcare provider may be necessary in certain cases, however, there are many benefits to telehealth:
* Limited physical contact reduces everyone's exposure to COVID-19
* Virtual visits ensure you get health care wherever you are located - at home, at work, or even in your car
*Virtual visits cut down on travel, time off from work, and the need for childcare
* Virtual healthcare tools can shorten the wait for an appointment
* Increased access to specialists who are located far away from your hometown
Other ObjectivesHealthy People 2030 (HP 2030) has created a research objective tied to telehealth, [https://health.gov/healthypeople/objectives-and-data/browse-objectives/health-it/increase-use-telehealth-improve-access-health-services-ahs-r02 HP 2030 Objective AHS-R02 "Increase the use of telehealth to improve access to health services"]
How Are We Doing?The first case of COVID-19 in Utah was in March 2020. In April 2020, 43.9% of medical claims from the All Payers Claim Database (APCD) were for telehealth visits. While telehealth visits have decreased since then, they have remained around 12-13% since July 2021.
Evidence-based Practices[https://www.cochranelibrary.com/cdsr/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD007718.pub2/full Telehealthcare for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease]
Health Program InformationThe Utah Department of Health and Human Services, Healthy Environments Active Living program plays a key role in improving the health of residents in the state of Utah. The program was formed in July 2013 (as EPICC), through a new funding opportunity from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that allowed for the merging of three previously existing programs: the Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention Program, the Diabetes Prevention and Control Program, and the Physical Activity, Nutrition and Obesity Program, as well as the addition of a school health program. The Healthy Environments Active Living Program (HEAL) was recently restructured as part of this strategic planning process and the new program model focuses on working together with staff and partners to address the social determinants of health while advancing health equity and increasing policy, systems and environment changes.
HEAL champions public health initiatives and addresses the challenges of making health awareness and access truly universal and equitable in eight key areas: nutrition, heart health, diabetes, physical activity, schools, child care, community health workers, and worksites. Visit [https://heal.utah.gov/ HEAL's website] for more information.