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Here's Why Teladoc Is Here to Stay

By Brian Withers – Oct 4, 2021 at 6:30AM

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The list of places where virtual healthcare can be used may surprise you.

Teladoc Health (TDOC -3.40%) became a household name almost overnight as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. But this company offers more opportunities for care than most people might imagine.

In this video from "Beat & Raise" on Motley Fool Live, recorded on Sept. 23, Fool.com contributor Brian Withers reviews a recent presentation by the company and explains the reason he thinks Teladoc is here to stay.

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Brian Withers: Let's move on to Teladoc. I think a number of folks have heard of the company. I have a few slides that I want to share from some of the earnings presentations that have happened in the past and provide you maybe a little bit more perspective on Teladoc and the broad range of services that they actually offer. We think of Teladoc as, well, it's my way to see the doctor as a patient in a virtual setting. But they did the InTouch Health which was a virtual care solution as well as in-hospital equipment to help with digital and virtual services. With the InTouch acquisition, they're playing out, the acquisition benefits here. They are actually able to service the broad range of offices and places you go to get expertise and look even in the ambulance which [laughs] I didn't realize that was a place that you would need virtual services. But I think that's an obviously in critical care situation, if you can get access to an expert and make some decisions on the spot, I think that's, in the long term, helpful for the patient.

You can also see all of these different kinds of care, different kinds of doctors that are available through the Teladoc platform. Pretty much anywhere you go in a hospital, home, retail, clinic, physician's office, you name it, even even worksite. Teladoc wants to be there.

This is one of my favorite slides, one of my key reasons why I think Teladoc is here to stay is if you look at here on the left, are some different specialties that you would think, wow, general surgery, cancer care, neurology, these, I would never have a virtual visit, you know what? If you look at the patient journey is across the top. There are a number of different kinds of visits throughout your care of breast cancer or joint replacement or gallstones that don't necessarily require you to be there in person. All of these green ones are virtually enabled, although they may not be widely used yet. You can see the gray boxes are places where obviously for diagnostic testing, you need to be there in person, for the surgery, [laughs] you need to be there in person, for rehab, things like that. But follow-up visits, not necessarily. It doesn't have to be an all-or-nothing situation I think of like Zoom, we're going to be in a hybrid virtual situation or some folks will be remote and others will be in the office. Similar to healthcare here is not every visit needs to be once the coronavirus is over and doctors offices open back up again, we won't be a 100% back to visiting the doctor in person.

This was in the Livongo presentation when they acquired Livongo, and it talks about how Teladoc is the preferred alternative for all of their constituents, all of their stakeholders. You can see you've probably, as a consumer, have had a virtual visit. I just remember I went to a doctor's appointment, physical in-person one, and I had to travel a half an hour to get there and I had to sit and wait there, and it was like a two hour adventure for 10 minutes with the doctor, and that's just frustrating as consumers, especially we have families and busy lives and we're trying to get things done during the day, a virtual visit is way more convenient.

The other thing that payers and employers, the people funding the insurance, are seeing that virtual care is, is beneficial and cost effective way to deal with with issues in health as well as could potentially, you know, catch something sooner if it's easier to go see the doctor from a consumer standpoint. Then the providers, you can see this increase in utilization. More providers are now comfortable using telehealth. This was an older presentation, I imagine that this is closer to a 100% now as the coronavirus has waned down. But you can see that Teladoc is focused on all the different constituents in rolling out their products.

The other piece is with the purchase of Livongo and they've been very acquisitive over time. They have a massive presence in behavioral health. You think about mental healthcare today, a lot of those visits can be virtual, and certainly, for the critical things that need to happen right away or an emergency thing can be done virtually as well. Then ongoing mental healthcare is a perfect way to utilize virtual services in Teladoc.

Brian Withers owns shares of Teladoc Health and Zoom Video Communications. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Teladoc Health and Zoom Video Communications. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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TDOC
$27.60 (-3.40%) $0.97
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Zoom Video Communications
ZM
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