There is a clear and serious mental healthcare crisis taking place in America. In a given year, more than 25% of adults are diagnosed with serious mental disorders such as anxiety, eating disorders, and depression. When these disorders go untreated, individuals end often end up in the emergency room, or worse, prison. The latter is often due to the stigmatization of the mentally ill as criminals, which is simply untrue.
If you are like the 25% of Americans suffering from mental illness, it can be easy to understand that seeking treatment is not always easy. Discussing mental illness isn’t the same as discussing a broken leg–it is an intangible, but very real affliction and sometimes, help can feel inaccessible.
While there are many types of telemedicine, telepsychiatry proves to be one of the most innovative and impacting. During a recent 1 and a half year study, more telepsychiatry appointments were kept as opposed to real-time, face to face psychiatry appointments. The statistics numbered 92% to 87%. In another study, it was proven that telehealth patients were far less likely to cancel their appointments with telemedicine doctors as compared to face to face appointments. A vital aspect of mental health recovery is diligence, and persistence of treatment, and telehealth facilitates this for patients.
So what’s next in the world of telemedicine psychiatry? Only time will tell.