Doctors are increasing their use of telemedicine

Over the last few years, the number of physicians using telemedicine has doubled, according to a new report from Doximity, and the number continues to increase 20% annually. The new report underscores the growing emergence of the new technologies and the rising need for easy access to medical care among certain populations.

The global telemedicine market value reached $38.3 billion in 2018, and it is expected to exceed $130.5 billion by 2025, according to Doximity. Already 15% of physicians work in medical practices that use telemedicine, according to the American Medical Association (AMA).

Driving this market is the growing need for access to medical care and the emergence of new technologies to meet these needs and enable doctors.

Telemedicine insights

Across age groups of job-seeking physicians, interest in telemedicine is roughly equal, the report found. Interest for telemedicine studies ranged from 17.6% among physicians 61 to 7- years old, to 28.4% among those 31 to 40 years old. Female physicians were more interested in telemedicine positions than their male counterparts––52% compared to 49%, the report found.

While telemedicine has often been touted as a way to improve access to medical care in rural areas that may lack facilities, physicians in larger metro areas tend to be more interested in telemedicine. In fact, the No. 1 U.S. metro with the highest number of physicians expressing interest in telemedicine was San Diego, followed by Miami, Atlanta, New York City and Salt Lake City.

The interest in telemedicine roles also varied by specialty. Here are the top specialists most engaged with telemedicine, as measured by job posting data:

  • Radiology
  • Psychiatry
  • Internal medicine
  • Neurology
  • Family medicine

The least engaged specialties include:

  • Anesthesiology
  • General surgery
  • Orthopedic surgery
  • Obstetrics
  • Oncology

“It’s encouraging to note that physicians across specialties, age groups and geographic regions are drawn to telemedicine,” the report reads. “Physicians’ increasing interest in telemedicine, and temporary positions, will help more patients get access to care. Whether it be a late-night call about an infant’s health from a new mother, a video chat with a mental healthcare provider, or a patient who lives 100 miles from the closest hospital having a follow-up visit with a provider, doctors and patients alike are using and benefiting from the rise of telemedicine across the country.”