TELUS Health, Canada’s largest health IT company and the leading provider of virtual care services for business and consumers across Canada, announced the launch of TELUS Health Virtual Care – the next evolution of its national, employer-focused virtual care service. TELUS Health Virtual Care is built on more than 35 years of combined experience delivering healthcare services to Canadians by merging the best-in-class capabilities and features of Akira by TELUS Health — the company’s bilingual, on-demand virtual care service; and EQ Care — its recently acquired virtual care company that delivers specialized virtual care functionalities and advanced employee assistance features like LifeJourney. This robust virtual care service provides more than 2.8M Canadians, with confidential access to nearly 500 healthcare professionals from a variety of disciplines to support every step of their healthcare journey. Further, through a recent integration, TELUS Health Virtual Care is also the first service in Canada to be able to securely share patient information, with appropriate consent, with any one of the 30,000 clinicians using a TELUS Health EMR providing care to the patient ensuring improved continuity of care.
“In this time of rapid innovation and the accelerated adoption of digital healthcare services across the country, we’re excited about this next phase in evolution of virtual care prioritizing interconnectivity and improving health outcomes,” said François Gratton, executive vice president, TELUS and group president, TELUS Health. “Supported by our extensive presence across Canada’s health industry and more than 35 years of combined leadership in health technology, our TELUS Health Virtual Care service is in a category of its own when it comes to offering Canadian employees compassionate, end-to-end, human interactions throughout every step of their care journey and access to healthcare professionals on demand.”
With the pandemic shifting the way many Canadians work and blurring the boundaries of work and home life, services like TELUS Health Virtual Care allow Canadian employers to:
Support their employees’ physical and mental health
Timely access to care with numerous provincially regulated restrictions continues to be a challenge for many, exacerbating mental health issues. The 2020 TELUS Health Virtual Healthcare Industry Report showed that 56 per cent of Canadians have reported negative impacts to their mental health since the outbreak of the global pandemic. TELUS Health Virtual Care offers not only non-emergent primary care support, but also mental health and allied health services so employees can get the care they need where and when they need it.
Increase productivity, reduce absenteeism, and minimize benefits costs
Seventy per cent of virtual care consults are initiated during the workday and 85 per cent of health concerns are resolved without an in-person visit. That means services that enable employees to remotely access care from anywhere reduces time spent away from work. Addressing health concerns immediately also helps avoid worsening conditions that could lead to higher benefits costs.
Provide seamless continuity of care
With consent, TELUS Health Virtual Care can be seamlessly integrated with medical charts managed by clinicians who use a TELUS Health EMR allowing patient information to be securely exchanged between the patient’s care team. This helps in preventing gaps in patient care and allows for more timely interventions, which are crucial in treating chronic conditions; a recent Sanofi Canada Healthcare Survey has shown that poor chronic disease management has been linked to issues with workplace productivity, absenteeism, and disability leaves. For employees without a family doctor but needing in-person care for non-emergent issues, TELUS Health Virtual Care can refer them to a physician at one of its more than 15 TELUS Health Care Centres across the country.
Recruit and retain top talent
In a talent-driven market, competitive salaries are no longer enough. Increasingly, employees are looking for benefits that help them proactively maintain and manage their health. In fact, 67 per cent of millennials say they want virtual care access and 77 per cent of Canadian employees would consider changing jobs for an employer who provides better support for their mental health and wellbeing.
Benefit from a proven ecosystem of solutions and services
For more than a decade, TELUS Health has built an ecosystem unlike any other company in Canada working with health authorities, community partners, and stakeholders to ensure a more sustainable healthcare system. Leveraging its vast network infrastructure and through guidance from its team of medical experts on the TELUS Medical Advisory Council, the company continues to drive innovation not only through programs and digital services, but also through the delivery of high quality medical care for Canadians regardless of their socio-economic status. Such initiatives include — Home Health Monitoring which enables safe, at-home recovery from COVID-19 or other illnesses; and Health for Good that brings primary care to marginalized populations across the country. Each initiative is underpinned in a human-first, medically-credible approach and meets or exceeds the highest standards for security and privacy by design.
With virtual care as a key component to modern health benefits plans, TELUS Health Virtual Care serves as a valuable complementary service to TELUS Health Benefits Management offerings, enabling insurance providers, advisors, and employers to offer holistic health benefits plans that meet the evolving needs of Canada’s workforce.
With more than $3 billion invested in health to date, TELUS Health continues to expand its suite of virtual care services — from remote patient monitoring technology and EMR-integrated solutions to consumer virtual care services covered by provincial healthcare plans — furthering its mission of transforming the healthcare system through the power of technology and empowering every person to live their healthiest life.
About TELUS Health
TELUS Health is a leader in digital health technology, providing virtual care, home health monitoring, electronic medical and health records, benefits and pharmacy management, and personal emergency response services. By leveraging the power of technology to deliver connected solutions and services, TELUS Health is improving access to care and revolutionizing the flow of information while facilitating collaboration, efficiency, and productivity for physicians, pharmacists, health authorities, allied healthcare professionals, insurers, employers, and citizens, to progress its vision of transforming healthcare and empowering people to live healthier lives.
Through the TELUS Health Care Centres, teams of renowned and passionate healthcare professionals deliver best-in-class patient-centric care to thousands of Canadian employers, professionals, and families in more than 15 medical clinics located across the country.