The state of health care two years into the pandemic

February 18, 2022
Dowling-Medford-2022

Angela Dowling speaks at Medford Chamber of Commerce event

By Regence

Now two years into the pandemic, COVID-19 overshadows everything in health care. As Omicron numbers improve throughout the region, this is a particularly opportune time to ask key questions such as what are the long-term effects of the disease, and most prominent impacts on the health care industry moving forward.

Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon President Angela Dowling recently sat down with Southern Oregon business leaders at a Medford Chamber of Commerce event to discuss some of those questions, as well as trends we’re seeing in health care.

Topics tackled included the pandemic’s impact on health care workforce, and the increase in postponed or abandoned routine preventive care. “How many cancers did not get detected? How much high blood pressure is actually in the community,” said Dowling. “Could we have caught some of these things sooner?”

Over the past two years, Regence has seen a surge in our members seeking behavioral health care and mental health support. The isolation and anxiety caused by COVID-19 has led to an explosive growth in behavioral health. At Regence, four of our top-five claims last year were related to behavioral health.

The conversation explored the increased adoption of virtual telehealth options as a result of these developments, empowering people both in rural and urban areas to access health care from the comfort of their home.

Regence members can sign in to their account at regence.com to learn more about their health plan’s telehealth options or call the number on the back of their ID card.

And to hear more about Dowling’s conversation with business leaders in Medford, you can watch coverage from KTVL-TV here.

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