How asynchronous care tools support virtual care delivery

Key differences:

Synchronous care requires real-time interaction.

Asynchronous care can happen at any time over any format.


During 2020, telehealth visits accounted for 23.6% of all healthcare visits compared to just 0.3% in 2019.1


Synchronous care

Helps maintain the patient-provider relationship with real-time interactions, including over video conference. Providers assess patients face-to-face, see their body language, understand their health concerns, and provide timely care.

Asynchronous care

Increases care accessibility and patient-provider convenience by enabling providers to go beyond real-time interaction by leveraging digital tools like instant messaging, content sharing, and more, so patients receive ongoing care anytime and anywhere.


Asynchronous telehealth has led to shorter wait times, fewer unnecessary referrals, and high levels of patient and provider satisfaction.2


The typical cost for an asynchronous visit is about $20 dollars, which compares to a national average cost of $50 dollars for a video visit and $125 dollars for an in-person visit. This leads to increased cost-savings and accessibility for patients.3

Why leverage asynchronous tools?

Patient’s receive ongoing care with asynchronous tools like guides, video, and forms shared before, during, and after an appointment. This content can support a patient outside of a video chat, and provide ongoing care even when a patient is not at a face-to-face appointment.

Organizations can scale existing programs and offer new ones using asynchronous tools that enable patients to receive care beyond the walls of a clinic.
With added in-person synchronous check-ins, providers ensure that patients are receiving the right care during asynchronous touchpoints, and can optimize and change based on in-person feedback. Behavioural healthcare patients can use synchronous meetings to discuss their healthcare outcomes, which providers can then use to change the type of content shared with the patient during asynchronous programs.
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We, just like many organizations, understand that our care should not just consist of the face-to-face support we provide during regular hours. We now have the ability to augment our care structure with these resources for our clients to access outside of normal hours, perhaps during heightened anxiety or times of stress.
- Shane Saltzman, CEO
  Trafalgar Addiction Treatment Centres

How an addictions organization leverages asynchronous care tools:

Trafalgar Addiction Treatment Center’s virtual outpatient program is patient-led with resources and other rich content shared through OnCall, with an added weekly check-in with a provider through video conference.

These resources and other asynchronous tools help to personalize the care experience, even if the patient and provider are not meeting face-to-face.

This means that patients can still receive and manage care at a time that suits their lifestyle, making care convenient and accessible.

Specifically, Trafalgar leverages guides, books, and more that are stored in OnCall’s system to share educational resources and homework with clients as they move through each stage of their programs. Questionnaires are then completed to measure the patient’s health outcomes, which are reviewed by the provider prior to video check-ins to help analyze the patient and their progress.

By leveraging synchronous and asynchronous tools, healthcare leaders can offer collaborative, secure, and robust care options for patients, providers, and business.

One of the most important things asynchronous communication does is help scale programs and provider response.4
- Ann Mond Johnson, MBA, MHA, CEO
  American Telemedicine Association


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