Telemedicine: New horizons in healthcare

Amir Radfar, Carol Lynn Chevalier, Nicole Rouse, Diana Patriche, Irina Filip


Objective: Telemedicine allows physicians to provide medical care remotely through audiovisual technology. Telemedicine may address many challenges facing our society: an aging population, chronic disease management, and healthcare cost. With this work, we attempt to evaluate how telemedicine can effect a change in these challenges, and evaluate what obstacles prevent some providers from using it.
Methods: In this work, the cost-effectiveness, success of telemedicine care, usefulness in reaching developing and underdeveloped areas, difficulties preventing the use of telemedicine, and proposals to overcome these challenges were reviewed and analyzed.
Results: Cost of telemedicine was reported 19% less expensive than traditional face-to-face care. In several studies, telemedicine was documented to have had equal or better outcomes for obstructive sleep apnea, geriatrics, heart failure, preventative medicine, and patient compliance. Difficulties in using telemedicine include affordability of equipment, lack of technical support in developing or underdeveloped areas, legality of licensure and patient privacy and satisfaction.
Conclusions: Although cost savings and convenience are major advantages of this technology, concerns with delivery barriers and challenges require cautious embracement of telemedicine. A great deal of research is needed to show that telemedicine improves patient centered outcomes.

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Journal of Hospital Administration

ISSN 1927-6990(Print)   ISSN 1927-7008(Online)

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