Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Telemedicine Saves Lives, But Clinicians are Resisting

While I was at the ConsumerElectronics Show last week, I ran into the easyhealthmd.comfolks who have created a telehealth system that one can access from home for real-time video consultations with doctors. Nice solution for keeping one out of the waiting room filled with H1N1 coughers.

Then, today, I see this article. Wowza. If we truly want telemedicine, we need to work on doctor/nurse attitudes.


Here's a mind-blowing snip from the article.

"While the researchers ultimately found that telemedicine could significantly improve survival among the sickest of I.C.U. patients, the resistance of on-site clinicians made it nearly impossible to assess the broad impact of such technology on quality of care.“Perhaps we never reached telemedicine’s full potential in this study because we did not have adequate acceptance,” Dr. Patel reflected. “You can’t just randomly assert some technology. You need a significant infrastructure to use it effectively, and that includes widespread acceptance.”

That acceptance will first require redefining the patient-doctor relationship in light of this new use of technology. Telemedicine and the idea of unseen clinicians in a remote “control room” doling out care isscary. But with dire predictions of physician shortages,particularly in rural regions, and insufficient numbers of critical care specialists even in large metropolitan areas, telemedicine likely has an important role in improving the quality of patient care."

No comments:

Post a Comment