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Telemed J E Health. 2003 Winter;9(4):393-401.

Outcomes and methods in telemedicine evaluation.

Author information

1
School of Health Information Sciences, University of Texas Health Science Center-Houston, Houston, Texas, USA. Noriaki.Aoki@uth.tmc.edu

Abstract

One hundred and four articles, published from 1966 to 2000, were reviewed to investigate telemedicine evaluation studies in terms of methods and outcomes. A total of 112 evaluations were reported in these 104 articles. Two types of evaluations were evaluated: clinical and nonclinical. Within the clinical evaluations, three were on clinical effectiveness, 26 on patient satisfaction, 49 on diagnostic accuracy, and nine on cost. In the non-clinical evaluations, 15 articles discussed technical issues relating to digital images, such as bandwidth, resolution, and color, and 10 articles assessed management issues concerning efficiency of care, such as avoiding unnecessary patient transfer, or saving time. Of the 112 evaluations, 72 were descriptive in nature. The main methods used in the remaining 40 articles used quantitative methods. Nineteen articles employed statistical techniques, such as receiver operating characteristics curve (three evaluations) and kappa values (seven evaluations). Only one article utilized a qualitative approach to describe a telemedicine system. Currently, there are a number of good reports on diagnostic accuracy, satisfaction, and technological evaluation. However, clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness are important parameters, and they have received limited attention. Since telemedicine evaluations tend to explore various outcomes, it may be appropriate to evaluate from a multidisciplinary perspective, and to utilize various methodologies.

PMID:
14980098
DOI:
10.1089/153056203772744734
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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