In a story about telemedicine and mobile healthcare that ran over the weekend, a HealthDay headline boasted: "In Health Care Today, It's Electronic All the Way." That's a rather absurd statement for an industry that still keeps most of its records on paper, but the point is that a few forms of telemedicine have become almost routine parts of the workflow of some physicians. (Think snapping a photo of a skin mole and emailing it to your doctor, or putting on a blood-pressure cuff that's linked to a wireless network to upload data to a cardiologist.)
"Someday we won't even consider it telemedicine anymore. It'll just be part of the way we practice medicine." says Dr. Jason Mitchell, assistant director for the American Academy of Family Physicians' Center for Health Information Technology. Yes, that's a much more accurate statement, looking to the future rather than saying today's healthcare is "electronic all the way,"particularly since insurers are trying to figure out how to reimburse for such services.
For more, including many specific examples of telemedicine finding its way into daily practice:
- check out this HealthDay story