Telepsychiatry for Skilled Nursing Facilities
Faced with an aging population and an increasing prevalence of behavioral health issues including dementia and Alzheimer’s, a growing need to bring psychiatric assessment into skilled nursing facilities, independent living complexes, and progressive continuum communities is rapidly developing. Unfortunately, the present trends of shortages of psychiatry and neurology do not bode well for the ability of the existing systems of care delivery to be able to respond to these growing needs.
Telepsychiatry can represent part of the solution by utilizing real-time video conferencing links to facilitate an interaction between senior residents and a distant clinician. This service method can be used for routine psychiatric evaluation and care or emergency crisis intervention when it may be difficult to find access to a local psychiatrist that is able to come onsite.
Regardless of geography or time, InSight’s services allow nursing homes the ability to schedule services in regular blocks of time with a skilled psychiatrist or psychiatric nurse practitioner which guarantees access to quality psychiatric care at an affordable rate. The result is that nursing facilities are able to reduce costs of traditional onsite services by reducing traveling expenses, time psychiatrists spend commuting to their facility, and the potentially higher fees a psychiatrist may charge for seeing individual consumers onsite.
Research highlights the cost savings in time and in overall expenses for psychiatric services delivered through telepsychiatry to Nursing Homes. Telepsychiatry’s acceptability is also reported to be high among the nursing home population, their families, and staff. Research has also cited telepsychiatry to be particularly valuable in rural areas where access to care is limited.