Health Systems Research Seminar : Virtual Visits: Friend or Foe of Patient-centred Care?

Friday, February 3, 2017, 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Virtual (video) visits are a new form of primary care that is increasingly available in parts of  Canada. There is a need to develop an understanding of patient perspectives on virtual visits and how they affect patient experience, access to care, and health services utilization patterns from a system perspective. We conducted a patient survey and an observation study on the users and providers of virtual visits in BC, where there has been public funding for this care since October 2012. Data analysis used fee-for-service physician payment data, patient and physician demographic data, and PharmaNet prescription data, from 2010/11–2013/14. We examined overall utilization of GP virtual visits to understand the characteristics of providers and patients providing and using these services, and conducted time series analyses to answer the question of whether virtual visits displace or add to other forms of patient care. Virtual visits are still a small portion of total primary care but are expected to increase. We find that patients use these services to see both known and new providers, and that these scenarios have different outcomes. Virtual visits may be one means of making the health system more patient-centred, but these effects depend on how they are integrated into existing health care delivery systems.

Friday, February 3, 2017
1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Telfer School of Management
Desmarais Building
DMS 4165
55 Laurier Avenue East
Ottawa, Ontario K1N 6N5
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About the Speaker

Kimberlyn McGrail, PhD, is an associate professor at the University of British Columbia, faculty with the UBC Centre for Health Services and Policy Research, Scientific Director of Population Data BC, and an associate with the Centre for Clinical Epidemiology and Evaluation. Kim’s current research interests are in evaluation of health system policy interventions, aging and the use and cost of health care services, and governance of access to data for research purposes. Her research is conducted in collaboration with policy and decision makers, including the BC Ministry of Health, BC’s Health Authorities, Canada Health Infoway, the Institute for Health System Transformation and Sustainability, and the Canadian Institute for Health Information.

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