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Telemedicine And Telepharmacy: Current Status And Future Implications

1741 words - 7 pages

Over the years, the field of medicine has undergone several changes for the improvement and effectiveness of its services. The technology field is one new development which has impacted medicine, and it has impacted medicine in mostly positive ways. Telemedicine is a field that deals with treatment and diagnosis of medical problems via telecommunication technology. Telemedicine involves offering care of services when distance is an issue. Remote healthcare services can be offered efficiently through tele-care across remote regions. Telepharmacy, video telemedicine, internet, fax, e-mails, computers and radios are example of tools that are used for telemedicine.
Telepharmacy involves the use of the Internet in prescribing and issuing drugs to patients. Although the use of telepharmacy has been adopted in many hospitals, it is important to encourage extensive use of this tool in every health institution. Telepharmacy also involves the use of video-conferencing for education, management and training purposes. The use of online drugstores by pharmacists has been extensively used over the years and has attracted many other healthcare professionals to use this system (Angaran, 1999). This use has improved pharmaceutical care in various hospitals and has made possible the provision of services to any patient regardless of the distance.
The telephone is used as a tool for offering healthcare services to people in remote areas, having changed from its former mode of access and use as a dialing and talking instrument. It plays a key role in multimedia access and in the provision of quality health services through its use in monitoring patients, conducting therapies, and providing counseling services and healthcare authorizations. Medical attachments are lined up on telephones, aiding in the provision of any services that need to be rendered to patients. Telephones solve distance problems, making it easier for patients in remote areas to receive services.
Demonstration projects are used through video presentations and images. Such projects are especially well suited for those who need to undergo therapy or surgery. Video links are used in explaining therapies through improved telecommunication infrastructure that aids in providing real data through the videos. Examples of such therapies include trauma advice and remote fatal diagnosis (Telemedicine: Fad or future?., 1995).
Due to its speed, ease of access and convenience, use of the internet has empowered health care systems to employ it as a source of health information. The internet has transformed the face of traditional medicine by offering educational services, and has improved medicine by providing information to anyone who might need access. The use of health care websites and blogs are examples of the use of medical use of internet. Such websites aid medical institutions in improving patient access to care, providing a convenient way of understanding patients’ needs and problems; and the internet...

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