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Int J Med Inform. 2002 Dec 18;68(1-3):99-111.

Home care delivery through the mobile telecommunications platform: the Citizen Health System (CHS) perspective.

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  • 1Lab of Medical Informatics, The Medical School, Aristotelian University, Box 323, 54124, Macedonia, Thessaloniki, Greece. nicmag@med.auth.gr


Health delivery practices are shifting towards home care. The reasons are the better possibilities for managing chronic care, controlling health delivery costs, increasing quality of life and quality of health services and the distinct possibility of predicting and thus avoiding serious complications. For the above goals to become routine, new telemedicine and information technology (IT) solutions need to be implemented and integrated in the health delivery scene, and these solutions need to be assessed through evidence-based medicine in order to provide solid proof for their usefulness. Thus, the concept of contact or call centers has emerged as a new and viable reality in the field of IT for health and telemedicine. In this paper we describe a generic contact center that was designed in the context of an EU funded IST for health project with acronym Citizen Health System (CHS). Since the generic contact center is composed by a number of modules, we shall concentrate in the modules dealing with the communication between the patient and the contact center using mobile telecommunications solutions, which can act as link between the internet and the classical computer telephony communication means. We further elaborate on the development tools of such solutions, the interface problems we face, and on the means to convey information from and to the patient in an efficient and medically acceptable way. This application proves the usefulness of wireless technology in providing health care services all around the clock and everywhere the citizen is located, it proves the necessity for restructuring the medical knowledge for education delivery to the patient, and it shows the virtue of interactivity by means of using the limited, yet useful browsing capabilities of the wireless application protocol (WAP) technology.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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