Patient survey finds 99 per cent are happy to recommend service
Users say telehealth as effective as 'face to face' appointment
More than 15,000 country patients used telehealth outpatient services in the past year
Country patients say having specialist medical appointments via videoconferencing in their home towns is convenient and saves them considerable time and money.
Health Minister John Day said the positive feedback came from a survey of users of the high-definition telehealth services linking country outpatients to clinicians in the State's major hospitals and health services.
"There is no doubt this Liberal National Government initiative is dramatically improving the lives of many regional residents," Mr Day said.
"More than 15,000 people have used telehealth outpatient appointments in the past year and the service continues to grow as people discover how convenient and efficient it is.
"Country people carry a significant burden when they have to travel to major centres to attend outpatient appointments."
Almost all patients said the service was as effective as a 'face to face' appointment.
Regional Development Minister Terry Redman said that he was pleased to see the impact the Royalties for Regions investment was having on health care in regional communities.
"The State Government is making significant investments in the telehealth expansion through the Royalties for Regions program," Mr Redman said.
"A total of $31 million in the south, as part of the $500 million Southern Inland Health Initiative, and in the north, telehealth forms an essential component of the $194.1 million North West Health Initiative.
"The response that 99 per cent of those surveyed would recommend the telehealth service is a clear indication of the success of this investment."
Of the more than 200 survey participants: 98 per cent said they were either very satisfied (79 per cent) or satisfied (19 per cent); 96 per cent said their doctor provided them with the same quality of service as a face to face appointment; 97 per cent said they saved time and money
In the 2015-16 financial year, there were almost 33,500 occasions of clinical service delivered by telehealth across regional WA including more than 16,500 emergency treatments, more than 5,000 mental health appointments and almost 12,000 outpatient consultations
Health Minister's office - 6552 6200
Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6700