As a society, we were catapulted into the virtual world (for some of us against our will) when the world shut down around us in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. All of a sudden, classrooms, boardroom meetings, doctors appointments, piano lessons, and family visits were moved online. While telehealth has existed prior to the pandemic, there was a rapid shift as it became the only option for receiving care.
Our video communications platforms, such as Skype, FaceTime, and Zoom were built for adults. None of us could have predicted that there would be an immediate need for a telecommunications solution for our children. We needed to adjust quickly, but we didn’t always have the best technology solutions for what we needed. Unfortunately, 3 years later, we still don’t have technology built specifically to address the needs of children.
Despite this, studies have shown the efficacy of telehealth care for children. One meta-analysis found that the literature consistently demonstrated improvements in child behavior when utilizing telehealth for family therapy equivalent to in-person family therapy. The same study also found that outcomes telehealth treatment of parental depression were better than outcomes for in-person services. Most recently, a randomized clinical trial found that telehealth was effective in reducing externalizing behaviors in children with developmental delay and that children maintained these improvements. Clinicians have also found telehealth to be a useful mode of delivering services.
Although the world has reopened since then, telehealth has changed the way that services are delivered. Telehealth has many benefits to patients, such as lower costs, improved access to care, convenience, and slowing the spread of infection and illness. With telehealth, clinicians can reduce their overhead expenses, see more patients, reduce exposure to illness, and provide them with flexibility and better work-life balance. As the demand for telehealth perseveres, technology must continue to develop alongside society’s changing needs.
Dr. Cierra Gromoff, Kismet’s CEO and Co-Founder, recognized how existing telehealth solutions continue to fail children, parents, and clinicians alike. She identified how technology could be the answer to better serve children and families, as well as reach underserved populations. Our team at Kismet Health is working hard to evolve pediatric healthcare by building a telehealth service tailored specifically to families and children.
Early studies are indicating positive outcomes for telehealth for children and families and it can be even more effective if we have the right technology tools! If you are excited about what we’re building at Kismet, contact us at email@example.com!