Healthcare Technology Featured Article

April 18, 2013

Telemedicine Crucial for Cutting Healthcare Expenses in European Countries


A new report from Frost & Sullivan suggests the market for remote patient monitoring applications (RPM) in Europe will generate over $800 million by 2018, thanks to investments from governments looking to cut healthcare costs.

"Governments have identified RPM applications as a cost-effective alternative method of healthcare delivery and are encouraging investments in them," said Sujith Eramangalath, healthcare program manager for Frost & Sullivan. "Despite volatility in European economies, the market for telehealth and telecare applications is expected to grow at a consistent pace."

Some countries, the report noted, are behind in implementing RPM solutions. Eramangalath cited Spain and Italy as examples and said that the adoptions rates could be due to a lack of public awareness about the availability of RPM solutions.

"Governments have identified RPM applications as a cost-effective alternative method of healthcare delivery and are encouraging investments in them," Eramangalath noted. "Private organizations and market participants are also playing their part in boosting awareness about the benefits of RPM services across Europe."

In addition to saving money for governments, RPM gives patients more independence as they recover from hospital stays or manage chronic disease. Telemedicine consultations with a medical professional can also help these patients avoid further health complications when they're out on their own.

Some healthcare and public sector organizations, however, lack information about funding for telemedicine and reimbursement programs. The wide range of reimbursement policies, for example, fragments the RPM market and makes adoption more complicated.

At the same time, says Eramangalath, the market is gradually moving toward maturity, thanks in part to patients who prefer access to customized care while they stay in home-based settings.

RPM generated revenue totaling $616.4 million in Europe alone in 2012.

"The market is gradually moving towards maturity with more countries providing strong encouragement through reimbursement and also a favorable investment climate by building better awareness," Eramangalath said.

Most healthcare expenditures in Europe are on in-patient care. While that statistic is unlikely to change, telemedicine can make a significant dent in those costs.




Edited by Braden Becker





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