Leveraging Virtual Care as a Health System Differentiator

Published June 25, 2021

The skyrocketing popularity of virtual care is no surprise to enterprising health system leaders who have long advocated for broader adoption of patient-centered care models. Citing both increasing patient demand and the many operational benefits of these approaches to care delivery, innovative health systems have been adjusting their clinical infrastructure for years.

Strengthening Health Systems

Virtual care can solve some of the thorniest challenges facing healthcare organizations, including:


  • Differentiation
    In crowded markets, innovation can help systems stand out from the competition. “Technology is bringing inpatient care into places where it would have been inconceivable just a few years ago,” says Theo Koury, MD, President of Vituity.
    One example is Hospital@Home, a 150-bed virtual hospital developed by Vituity and Adventist Health’s Central Valley Network. The program leverages remote monitoring, telehealth, and mobile teams to extend inpatient care into homes. After launching in 2020, its success spurred other practice locations within Adventist Health to incorporate into their offerings.
  • ED crowding
    Prior to the pandemic, Vituity had already teamed up with Decoded Health to create a Virtual Front Door that navigates patients to the appropriate level of care. Before leaving home, patients initiate a telehealth visit with an emergency clinician. If appropriate, the ED provider resolves the presenting problem via telehealth. Patients who require a face-to-face ED or urgent care visit arrive fully registered with orders completed.
  • System leakage
    Integrating follow-up scheduling into the virtual workflow facilitates referrals and helps to keep patients in the system. Some innovative organizations are even integrating apps like Uber into their platforms so patients can schedule rides to their appointments. Many Vituity emergency departments (EDs) now offer telehealth follow-up visits for discharged patients. “These are both examples of popular and cost-effective solutions that flow directly from patient needs,” Dr. Koury says.
  • Clinician satisfaction
    New technologies help clinicians provide better and more satisfying patient care, promoting resilience and career longevity. “Our doctors who follow up directly with patients report an incredibly high level of satisfaction,” says Vituity client, Gino Patrizio, CEO of Memorial Medical Center of Modesto. “They have opportunities to adjust care plans and bring patients back for treatment. Or they have peace of mind knowing that the patient is stable.”
  • Expanding access to care
    Virtual care visits allow health systems to more efficiently serve homebound patients, those with weighty family and work responsibilities, and those who live far from a facility. “We haven’t just cracked the door in terms of generating convenience and value for consumers,” says Vituity client, Arby Nahapetian, MD, SVP and System Medical Officer of Adventist Health. “We’ve thrown that door wide open.”

Partnering to improve patient lives

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