Telemedicine, the way forward on patient care

The idea of telehealth has been
around for many years. Telemedicine
generally refers to the use
of communications and information
technologies for the delivery of
clinical care. In this discipline medical
information is transferred via telephone,
the internet or other networks for the purpose of
consulting and sometimes even remote medical procedures
or examinations.
Videocommunication now has the prime role of
improving the quality of life for patients and reducing
costs for healthcare structures. Broadband capacity,
better videoconferencing equipment and the use
of high definition are making telemedicine a real
option for the health industry. There is also an important
role to be filled by a-v integrators on designing
systems that address local needs.
Telemedicine can be used as a means of consultation
between doctors, doctors and patients or as an
educational tool. It also makes it possible to provide
specialised expertise in remote places where otherwise
it would be difficult or impossible to get. Telecare
for the elderly and chronically ill is also a key application
facilitated by visual communication. It offers a
call centre style of consultation, available 24/7.
Home care, teleconsulting or distance learning
applications may be put into practice at different
levels. A popular use is of video communication
resources is to share images between experts, such as
live surgical operations, dermatology pictures or live
images, X-ray and Digital Imaging and Communication
in Medicine (DICOM) acquired data or other
medical high resolution images. The sharing of
images equates to an interview between doctors,
experts and patients, and is much more efficient than
a basic telephone call or email. It is also faster and
sometimes more cost-effective than meeting in person.

 

Read the full article: Where are the doctors when you need one?

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