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How digital health solutions reach their target groups

During the Corona pandemic, video consultations with doctors increased significantly. In particular, academics with fewer chronic illnesses are taking advantage of the digital service. Hybrid solutions are a good way to reach patients with a lower digital affinity.

Image source: National Cancer Institute on Unsplash

The biannual "EPatient Survey" questioned 5100 people about digital services in the healthcare sector. Online consultations, for example, increased exponentially last year. According to the KBV, 1.2 million consultation hours were held digitally in the second quarter of 2020 alone. In 2019, the figure was just 3,000 consultation hours.

The service is unevenly used

While academics with fewer chronic illnesses are most likely to take advantage of digital consultations, the situation is different for people with a lesser affinity for technology. Patients with chronic diseases and older generations in particular are also less likely to use online consultations, even though they are the focus of digital health applications. One solution would be to combine analog services with digital services. In a hybrid scenario, health apps would be used at the point of care.

Examples for hybrid scenarios

In England, hybrid solutions have been on offer for years. In libraries or job centers, assistants or terminals show people how to use their medication app or schedule doctor's appointments online. Something similar could be set up in Germany for doctors or pharmacies. Instructions on a website are often not enough to reach the target group in question. Direct on-site advice is required.

This requires trained and experienced personnel to explain the digital applications to the staff in the hospitals and pharmacies on site. These personnel will also accompany the product launches, ensure support and differentiation from the competition, and thus ultimately help to establish the products.

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