ARMENIAN ASSOCIATION OF TELEMEDICINE
 
 
 
 

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The extraordinary developments in computing, communications and medical technologies, are making a reality what we have not even dreamt of. Telemedicine & eHealth are revolutionizing the world of health care. If you are, or wish to be involved in this exciting field, the “Future of Medicine”, then this site is for you. Learn how to become AATM member

 
 
 
 
 

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Discussion Forums & Consulting Services

This section contains links to a variety of interactive activities, such as On-line Discussion Groups for health care professionals or general public, and On-line Consultation Services for the patients. If you wish to participate in our on-line discussions, ask physician a question, or apply for a consult, you will need to log in, or register with this web-site.

 
 
 
 
Telemedicine & eHealth

TM & eH at a glance
. Introduction
. What is TM & eH
. Definitions
. Examples
. Brief History
. Facts & Figures
. Types of Services
. Tools & Equipment
. Benefits
. Difficulties
. Future


Telemedicine & eHealth in Armenia

References & Further Readings

Related Resources

Benefits of Telemedicine & eHealth

Traditionally to access medical care or advice, people have had to travel to the doctor or hospital. The more complex or rare the problem, the further it has been necessary to go.
Telemedicine and eHealth, by making use of computers and telephone technologies, now makes it possible for an increasing range of medical services to be available locally.
The benefits of wide deployment of Telemedicine and eHealth applications and services for patients and citizens, for health professionals, and for society as a whole, lie in the following major domains [1, 2, 7, 8, 13, 17, 25, 32, 33, 36, 39, 41, 48, etc]:

  • Improved access to and quality of health care:
  • Telemedicine and eHealth services offer patients the access to specialist care that might not be available otherwise, as well as medical services without the need to travel long distances. Tele-consultations take specialists to the primary health-care level.
  • By abolishing time and distance barriers TM & eH ensure early diagnosis and treatment, and makes available immediate care in emergency situations, accidents and disasters [51]
  • Access to comprehensive, secure electronic health records has been shown to improve the quality of care and patient safety. Improved knowledge of the patient’s history and previous medical interventions facilitates appropriate treatment.
  • TM & eH can further strengthen health care systems to reduce medical errors through the provision of vital information, alerts and guidance on best practice.
  • Increased cost-effectiveness of health systems:
  • Telemedicine and eHealth services allow reducing the cost of healthcare through better management of chronic diseases, shared health professional staffing, reduced travel times, and shorter hospital stays.
  • Tele-consultations may reduce the need for patients to attend hospitals, saving them both time and money. Hospitals can then focus their resources on patients who may benefit from treatment at the secondary level of health service.
  • TM & eH can become a key driver for improved cost-effectiveness when applications such as electronic patient records, smart cards, physician order entry, medications systems and digitalized diagnostic equipment are available.
  • TM & eH can also improve the cost-effectiveness of nursing care and administrative work.

This is critical for resource-limited settings, especially during current economic recession state, when access to health care is becoming a real public health challenge for many developing countries.

  • Increased efficiency of health care management:
  • Integrated and comprehensive data can be effectively provided using eHealth tools, such as electronic health records and support for care flow management.
  • Automatic data management from electronic health systems can markedly increase productivity of health care administration, greatly improve use of resources, and eradicate the huge administrative burden of filling in multiple paper forms.
  • Similar advantages can be obtained through an eHealth-based hospital referral system founded on digitalized data.

These initiatives form a definite trend in the aim to modernize healthcare systems.

  • Reduced corruption risks in health care system:
  • Telemedicine and eHealth services can abolish such well-recognized drivers for corruption in the health care system, as direct financial relations between health care providers and patients, waiting lists for medical services, and inequity of access to highly specialized care.
  • Introduction of electronic health care management systems further leads to corruption risk reduction, by obviating unnecessary and artificial administrative barriers.
  • Facilitated medical education and research:
  • Not only does Telemedicine and eHealth improve access to patients, but it also allows physicians and health facilities to expand their reach, beyond their own offices.
  • TM & eH can be an effective vehicle for training medical personnel and ensuring that wherever they are, and whenever they need, they can access evidence based information, latest medical breakthroughs and discoveries.
  • Direct tele-consultation between the community health worker and a relevant hospital specialist can reduce professional isolation and provide opportunities for continuing education to the community health practitioner.
  • Shared tele-based services such as tele-pathology, tele-laryngoscopy, or tele-laparoscopy allow even major teaching hospitals to obtain additional expertise when needed.
  • Electronic health records also enable the extraction of information for research, management, public health or other related statistics of benefit to health professionals.
  • And, improved health education of general public:
  • Telemedicine and eHealth give general public (patients and healthy citizens) access to specialized medical information, increasing their awareness, allowing them to effectively manage their health risks, and overall increasing adoption of healthy life styles.
  • TM & eH are also increasingly gaining importance in view of current tendencies towards globalization, universal access to highly specialized information (including health related information), and increasing overall electronic literacy (Information Society).

Thus, TM & eH services combined with organizational changes and the development of new skills can deliver significant benefits to the entire community, through improvements in access to and quality of care. It contributes to citizen-centered health systems and to the overall efficacy, efficiency, productivity and sustainability of the health sector.

In some areas in the world traditional hospital based outpatient clinics are already being replaced with nurse-run clinics in general practices. The nurses talk to the patient, collect all the information required on a computer and send this "electronic patient record" over the phone lines to a specialist. The specialist could be located anywhere. The specialist views the record (which could include photographs, X-rays, ECGs or other details as well as text) and uses his computer to send a report back to the patient's GP.

Or, minor injury units can now be linked to trauma centres. If a casualty attends such a unit, the nurse can send X-rays over the phone line, for a radiologist to view and report back. She can also videoconference with a Consultant in the trauma centre in order to discuss how to manage an injury.

These sorts of approaches enable care and advice to be made available much more locally and often more quickly than the traditional approaches.

The range of Telemedicine and eHealth services is increasing rapidly and will become a core feature of health care systems. Access to expertise regardless of where you live should help to ensure fair provision of services for all. Access to good quality health information over the Internet, digital TV and via multimedia kiosks will give us all an opportunity to maintain better health.

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AATM is National Member of ISfTeH.

 

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 AATM is a national member of European Federation for Medical Informatics.
 
MoH
 
TEMPUS
 
UITE
 
MedWeb
 
AMD Telemedicine
 
Med-e-Tel International    Forum on Telemedicine, eHealth and Health ICT
 
European Health Telematics  Association (EHTEL)
 

Swinfen Telemedicine

Telemedicine.com


AATM Armenian Association of
Telemedicine (AATM)
Tel.:
+374 91 42 19 28
Tel. mob.:
+ 374 93 911 110
Fax:
+ 374 10 58 40 87

E-mail:
info@armtelemed.org

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