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Healthc Inform Res. 2015 Oct;21(4):251-4. doi: 10.4258/hir.2015.21.4.251. Epub 2015 Oct 31.

Prerequisites for Effective Implementation of Telemedicine: Focusing on Current Situations in Korea.

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College of Nursing, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea.



The practice of telemedicine requires social interventions and systems for efficient implementation. Further, it requires sufficient discussions among related parties because the purpose of telemedicine is diagnosis and treatment, and the participation of medical specialists is essential. Based on the characteristics of the healthcare structure of Korea, which has a low proportion of public healthcare and most patients are taken care of by a few large tertiary care hospitals, the fundamental issues need to be discussed.


A comparison was conducted with overseas cases to discuss the prerequisites for the effective implementation of telemedicine in South Korea under the current situation. We also examined the structural characteristics of the Korean medical community.


The current paper recommends that an in-depth analysis and studies are conducted on the following aspects: a search for telemedicine services focused on public healthcare, a search of services for illnesses that impose high levels of burden on households, and the development and implementation of a telemedicine system for follow-up management at primary and secondary care hospitals after the patient undergoes surgery or treatment at tertiary care hospitals.


As the technology develops, the focus should also be on factors such as safety, usefulness, availability, and how the functions will be realized in order to enable user communication. A clear system should be established to regulate and manage the lack of sufficient discussions. In addition, seeking projects and systems that reflect the characteristics of each country will facilitate the efficient implementation of telemedicine.


Health Policy; Telehealth; Telemedicine

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