Associations of telemedicine vs. in-person ambulatory visits and cancellation rates and 30-day follow-up hospitalizations and emergency department visits.
Prev Med Rep ; 24: 101629, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1602943
ABSTRACTLittle is known about cancellation frequencies in telemedicine vs. in-person appointments and its impact on clinical outcomes. Our objective was to examine differences between in-person and video telemedicine appointments in terms of cancellation rates by age, race, ethnicity, gender, and insurance, and compare 30-day inpatient hospitalizations rates and 30-day emergency department visit rates between the two visit types. Demographic characteristics and comorbidities for adults scheduled for an Emory Healthcare ambulatory clinic appointment from June 2020 to December 2020 were extracted from the electronic medical record. Each appointment was identified as either a video telemedicine or in-person clinic appointment. The outcomes were ambulatory clinic cancellation rates, 30-day hospitalization rates, and 30-day emergency department visit rates. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess differences between appointment types. A total of 1,652,623 ambulatory clinic appointments were scheduled. Ambulatory appointment cancellations rates were significantly lower among telemedicine compared to in-person appointments overall (20.4% vs. 31.0%, p < .001) and regardless of gender, age, race, ethnicity, insurance, or specialty (p < .05 for all sub-groups). Telemedicine appointments were associated with lower 30-day hospitalization rates compared to in-person appointments (AOR 0.72, 95% CI 0.71-0.74). There was no difference in 30-day emergency department visit rates between telemedicine and in-person appointment patients (AOR 1.00, 95% CI 0.98-1.02). Our findings suggest that there are fewer barriers to attending an ambulatory care visit via telemedicine relative to in-person. Using video telemedicine was not associated with more frequent adverse clinical events compared with in-person visits.
Full text: Available Collection: International databases Database: MEDLINE Type of study: Cohort study / Experimental Studies / Prognostic study / Randomized controlled trials Language: English Journal: Prev Med Rep Year: 2021 Document Type: Article Affiliation country: J.pmedr.2021.101629