Telehealth Performance – How Good Is It?

Telehealth is here to stay, but it will go through an evolution like all new technology shifts. A new study evaluated performance of teledermatology. The results were mixed. There were incorrect diagnoses and missed diagnoses. Treatment recommendations were not always consistent with guidelines. Prescriptions frequently lacked disclosure about possible adverse effects.  The study was limited because there are not yet large numbers of cases to evaluate. A significant limitation to the study was the authors were unable to assess whether clinicians seeing these patients in traditional in-person encounters would have performed any better.

On balance, telehealth is a good thing. It has the potential to expand access to more patients, and the medical literature is filled with examples of telehealth systems providing quality care. The key is having good providers. A great surgeon using robotic assistance can do every greater surgery. A so so surgeon with a robot will do so so surgery. The same is true of telehealth. Hospitals and health systems offering telehealth services must set high standards for the providers to use the service. Read the full story at Study assesses performance of direct-to-consumer teledermatology services.

This is a re-post from written by Dr. John Patrick.

DR. JOHN PATRICK is the author of Health Attitude: Unraveling and Solving the Complexities of Healthcare and Net Attitude: What it is, How to Get it, and Why it is More Important Than Ever. He is president of Attitude LLC and former Vice President of Internet Technology at IBM, where he worked for thirty-five years. In addition to holding a Doctorate in Healthcare Administration (DHA), Dr. Patrick has degrees in electrical engineering, management, and law. He has more than four decades of experience in business and ten years serving on the board of a hospital.