Remote Healthcare 101: Telehealth vs. Telemedicine Explained

Updated on May 12, 2021

Have you been curious about the differences between Telehealth and Telemedicine because of COVID-19? Are you wondering about the various kinds of remote services available to you?

Well, you are in the right place!

Remote healthcare has become a vital part of our daily lives. Many people prefer to have virtual visits with doctors or other healthcare professionals when they are ill. This provides them with a safer environment for examination. It also can allow them to maintain social distancing.

Other people may prefer virtual visits. Some people find in-person conversations to be stressful or uncomfortable. Being able to have conversations with people from their house is a way to ease their minds and make them more comfortable. 

We are going to explain the differences between Telehealth and Telemedicine. The terms Telehealth and Telemedicine are often used interchangeably. Yet, they can be used in various contexts.

Are you ready to take a look at these differences so you can make the best choice for yourself?

Are Telehealth and Telemedicine the Same?

The short answer is no, Telehealth and Telemedicine are not the same. 

The main difference between Telehealth and Telemedicine is the range of applications. Telemedicine is only one branch of Telehealth. This means that all Telemedicine is part of Telehealth. Yet, not all Telehealth options apply to Telemedicine. 

When looking at the Telehealth and Telemedicine difference, it can be seen that Telehealth is a broad healthcare category. 

There are also some legal considerations in Telehealth and Telemedicine. One of the most prominent considerations is confidentiality. This is often a risk with online meetings. The world has seen that people can hack Zoom calls throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Telehealth and Telemedicine provide a way for people in the healthcare system to interact with each other in a safe way. Their information will not be leaked. Also, random people cannot enter videoconferencing apps or websites without permission. 

Another legal consideration in Telehealth and Telemedicine is HIPAA compliance. Each patients’ health information must be kept secure at all times. Telehealth services lead to some flexibility with HIPAA rules. Yet, this can create some risk.

Remote visits and communication will still be held to a high standard and care must be of good quality. However, clinics and healthcare professions need to prioritize taking care of personal information.

Some examples of Telehealth and Telemedicine include clinical and non-clinical services. Telehealth can be both clinical and non-clinical. However, Telemedicine can only be clinical.

This means that Telehealth can provide alerts to the public about an outbreak of a virus. Telehealth cannot do this. Instead, it can provide doctor appointments, medication, and treatment for the virus. 

Let’s take a look at the specifics of Telehealth and Telemedicine.


Telehealth refers to a broad range of technology and patient care services. This helps to improve the healthcare delivery system and give care to everyone that seeks medical care. 

As a whole, Telehealth is a broader label than telemedicine. It provides remote non-clinical services to patients. This can include provider training, administrative meetings, and medical education. 

The World Health Organization lists three main aspects of Telehealth. These are surveillance, health promotion, and public health functions. 

Telehealth is also a subcategory of E-health. This includes delivering health information to health professionals and patients. It also refers to the education and training of healthcare workers. They can use these management systems in a remote format to communicate with each other. 

An example of Telehealth includes remote monitoring of vital signs. Doctors are able to evaluate a patient’s ECG or blood pressure in a remote setting. Telehealth provides them with the opportunity to keep track of health changes while the patient is at home. 

Another example is the use of virtual pharmacies. This allows doctors to prescribe medication and treatment after a remote appointment. Patients can pick up their medication from a nearby pharmacy. Pharmacies can also mail it to their home. 


Telemedicine is a more narrow category. It is a subset of Telehealth that refers to giving healthcare services and education in a remote setting. 

Telemedicine is often applied through electronic communication and software in clinical service. This allows patients to visit with their physician without needing to see them in person. 

This technology is used often for follow-up visits or management of chronic conditions. Since these appointments often do not require a physical exam, they can be done through a conversation. Since a doctor and a patient can talk online, telemedicine is useful for making these conversations possible.

These remote visits are possible because of secure video and audio connections. Since these appointments are confidential, it is important to make sure that the visits cannot be hacked or observed by anyone else. Telemedicine helps these visits to occur in a secure and safe environment free of risk. 

One example of Telemedicine is video consultation appointments with a physician. Patients can meet with a specialist from their computer or phone at any time. Telemedicine allows them to meet safely and still receive high-quality medical care. This helps their patients to find the best telemedicine services

Another example of Telemedicine is remote diagnoses. By using Telemedicine technology, doctors can diagnose a patient while they are at home. They can also e-prescribe medication and treatments for their conditions.

Summing Up Telehealth and Telemedicine 

Overall, Telehealth and Telemedicine are not the same. Telehealth provides a broader range of options, but both can give clinical services to patients.

Telehealth and Telemedicine have been valuable components throughout the past year. Many people have used their service and technology. It can help you to speak with their doctors and receive treatment. They have been fantastic and safe options for people and have also become quite popular.

We encourage you to take a look at the services provided by Telehealth and Telemedicine. By examining these further, you will be able to gain a better understanding of what services you have to choose from. Keep browsing around our health section for our latest. 

+ posts

Throughout the year, our writers feature fresh, in-depth, and relevant information for our audience of 40,000+ healthcare leaders and professionals. As a healthcare business publication, we cover and cherish our relationship with the entire health care industry including administrators, nurses, physicians, physical therapists, pharmacists, and more. We cover a broad spectrum from hospitals to medical offices to outpatient services to eye surgery centers to university settings. We focus on rehabilitation, nursing homes, home care, hospice as well as men’s health, women’s heath, and pediatrics.