Hong Kong Med J 1998;4:289-92 | Number 3, September 1998
Telemedicine: academic and professional aspects
NM Hjelm
Department of Chemical Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Prince of Wales Hospital, Shatin, Hong Kong
Doctors have recently gained substantial experience of using telemedical applications for consultations, education and training, and conferences. What is still lacking is systematic evaluation of these new approaches compared with traditional procedures. Trials involving consultations for diagnostic, monitoring, and interpretative purposes should be blinded and multicentred, and should include tests of patient satisfaction as well as macro-economic considerations. The quality of educational programmes and conferences should be documented and compared with traditional teaching methods. International standards need to be developed for such evaluations, to allow comparisons between trials performed at national and international levels. Hong Kong is in a good position to contribute to these developments because of a well-integrated health care system and excellent telecommunication facilities. Through telemedicine, Hong Kong could resume a leading global position in the use of advanced information technology.
Key words: Evaluation studies; Remote consultation; Telecommunications; Telemedicine
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