This American College of Physicians position statement and review of available evidence outlines the potential benefits and limitations of telemedicine.
Use this paper to:
- Review the definition of telemedicine (use the Table). How does telemedicine differ from answering a patient's telephone call?
- What are the potential advantages of telemedicine for patients? Health care providers may worry about reimbursement or the loss of income from face-to-face visits. Are there potential advantages for health care providers or institutions? Use the accompanying editorial to help you consider the topic.
- Does your health system provide telehealth services (e.g., remote monitoring in your or other intensive care units)? If so, consider doing to see how it works. Would you be comfortable making medical decisions in this manner?
- Review the legal challenges to the practice of telehealth. Do you know whether there are limitations to your practice of medicine outside of the state in which you will be licensed?