WellPoint (NYSE: ANTM ) is well known for being a strong Obamacare player. But the company's doing even more to innovate, working in new and exciting ways to help usher in an incredible change in how health care does business.
WellPoint recently introduced LiveHealth Online, a telehealth video service that enables consumers to meet with a doctor from the comfort of their own home. The service allows doctors to meet patients over a video feed, diagnose them, and prescribe medication in minutes.
The service is a covered benefit for many WellPoint (Blue Cross Blue Shield) members, but even if it isn't covered, it still only costs $49 for a ten-minute session. This is a huge potential win-win for the insurer and customers, as customers may find it easier to meet with a physician for ten minutes at home, thereby increasing use of preventative care. More visits with doctors will hopefully help people better identify health problems early -- avoiding costly and inconvenient hospitalizations and significantly improving individual health.
Whether WellPoint remains on the cutting edge or is overtaken by other insurers and providers is an open question, but this is an incredible potential leap forward in health care with the combination of medicine and technology.
In this video, from Friday's Market Checkup, the Motley Fool's health care-focused investing show, health care analysts Michael Douglass and David Williamson talk about the exciting opportunities in telehealth and what investors should watch for in this young, vibrant, and growing field.
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