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Type: Journal article
Title: Evaluation of a telemedicine link between Darwin and Adelaide to facilitate cancer management
Author: Olver, I.
Selva-Nayagam, R.
Citation: Telemedicine Journal and E-health, 2000; 6(2):213-218
Publisher: Mary Ann Liebert Inc.
Issue Date: 2000
ISSN: 1530-5627
Abstract: The videoconferencing link between the Royal Adelaide Hospital Cancer Centre in South Australia and the Royal Darwin Hospital in the Northern Territory was established to allow Darwin clinicians to discuss cases in multidisciplinary oncology meetings at the tertiary referral center. This was evaluated by questionnaires distributed to the 20 health professionals involved and a group of 8 patients with breast cancer whose case histories had been discussed via videoconferencing. All clinicians found the telemedicine link to be either useful or very useful in at least one aspect of their practice. The major benefit was cited as enabling remote area clinicians to participate in multidisciplinary cancer meetings. Three of the 5 remote clinicians who practiced solely in the Northern Territory found that the telemedicine consultation increased their workload, while only 2 of 13 clinicians who practiced solely in South Australia reported an increase over their normal activities, the others reporting no difference. Benefits identified included better support of isolated clinicians, decreased travel, and enhanced education and peer review. Perceived difficulties were technical problems, the impersonal nature of the interaction, inability to examine the remote patient and lack of reimbursement for the consultation. Seven of the eight patients surveyed were satisfied or very satisfied with the telemedicine consultation. Four patients wished to have access to videotape of the multidisciplinary meeting. Of those requiring travel for treatment, all believed that the telemedicine consultation influenced their care and shortened their time away from home.
Keywords: Humans; Neoplasms; Attitude of Health Personnel; Remote Consultation; Adult; Middle Aged; Workload; Patient Care Team; Female; Male
RMID: 0001002018
DOI: 10.1089/107830200415144
Appears in Collections:Medicine publications

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