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Telemed J E Health. 2010 Jan-Feb;16(1):107-11. doi: 10.1089/tmj.2009.0157.

Innovation networks for improving access and quality across the healthcare ecosystem.

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Telehealth Program, Indian Health Service, Flagstaff, Arizona, USA.


Partnerships between patient communities, healthcare providers, and academic researchers are key to stepping up the pace and public health impact of clinical and translational research supported by the National Institutes of Health. With emphasis shifting toward community engagement and faster translation of research advances into clinical practice, academic researchers have a vital stake in widening the use of health information technology systems and telehealth networks to support collaboration and innovation. However, limited interaction between academic institutions and healthcare providers hinders the ability to form and sustain the integrated networks that are needed to conduct meaningful community-engaged research that improves public health outcomes. Healthcare providers, especially those affiliated with smaller practices, will need sustainable infrastructure and real incentives to utilize such networks, as well as training and additional resources for ongoing technical assistance.

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