Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare

Publisher: SAGE Publications

Journal description

Telemedicine' has been defined in general terms to be 'medicine practised at a distance' and as such it encompasses both diagnosis and treatment, as well as medical education. During the last decade certain telemedicine applications, such as videoconsulting and teleradiology, have matured to become essential health care services. Others, such as telepathology, remain the subject of intensive research effort. The Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare publishes peer-reviewed papers on all aspects of both telemedicine and telecare - the latter covering distance nursing and community support. It is relevant to both the primary and secondary medical sectors, as well as having application to the veterinary field, and includes papers on all aspects of these emerging fields. In addition to original articles, the journal publishes preliminary communications, commissioned review articles, case reports, letters to the Editor and book reviews.

Current impact factor: 1.54

Impact Factor Rankings

2015 Impact Factor Available summer 2016
2014 Impact Factor 1.542
2013 Impact Factor 1.736
2012 Impact Factor 1.467
2011 Impact Factor 1.207
2010 Impact Factor 1.274
2009 Impact Factor 0.921
2008 Impact Factor 0.89
2007 Impact Factor 0.963
2006 Impact Factor 0.802
2005 Impact Factor 0.749
2004 Impact Factor 0.749
2003 Impact Factor 1.094
2002 Impact Factor 1.366
2001 Impact Factor 1.351
2000 Impact Factor 1.733

Impact factor over time

Impact factor

Additional details

5-year impact 1.78
Cited half-life 6.90
Immediacy index 0.19
Eigenfactor 0.00
Article influence 0.56
Website Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare website
ISSN 1758-1109

Publisher details

SAGE Publications

  • Pre-print
    • Author can archive a pre-print version
  • Post-print
    • Author can archive a post-print version
  • Conditions
    • Authors retain copyright
    • Pre-print on any website
    • Author's post-print on author's personal website, departmental website, institutional website or institutional repository
    • On other repositories including PubMed Central after 12 months embargo
    • Publisher copyright and source must be acknowledged
    • Publisher's version/PDF cannot be used
    • Post-print version with changes from referees comments can be used
    • "as published" final version with layout and copy-editing changes cannot be archived but can be used on secure institutional intranet
    • Must link to publisher version with DOI
    • Publisher last reviewed on 29/07/2015
  • Classification

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Introduction: Telemedicine has the advantage of providing medical resources in rural areas, but few studies have been conducted to investigate its efficacy in dementia care, compared to face-to-face care. This study evaluated the effectiveness of telemedicine in relation to cognitive changes in patients with dementia. Methods: We evaluated cognitive changes over time, according to care modality, in 188 patients with dementia who were registered at our university-based dementia clinic. We followed 98 patients using telemedicine services and 90 patients who attended the dementia clinic in person. Patients in the telemedicine group also visited a public health center located in a rural area about 50 km from the dementia clinic. Results: Changes in the mean annualized Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) score were not significantly different between the telemedicine group and the face-to-face dementia clinic group (p = 0.291), with changes of 0.60 and 1.03 points, respectively. However, cognitive decline was significantly lower in the telemedicine group for the less severe initial cognitive performance subgroup than more severe cognitive performance subgroup (p = 0.049), with changes of 0.62 and 1.59 points, respectively. Higher initial Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) scores, MMSE scores, and age were found to be independent predictive factors of subsequent cognitive changes, as indicated by mean annualized MMSE scores. Discussion: These findings suggest that telemedicine may be a useful alternative to face-to-face clinical visits for management of dementia in patients who are located in rural areas.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 11/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15615049
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    ABSTRACT: Introduction: mHealth holds promise in transforming care for people with serious mental illness (SMI) and other disadvantaged populations. However, information about the rates of smartphone ownership and usage of mobile health apps among people with SMI is limited. The objective of this research is to examine the current ownership, usage patterns, and existing barriers to mobile health interventions for people with SMI treated in a public sector community mental health setting and to compare the findings with national usage patterns from the general population. Methods: A survey was conducted to determine rates of ownership of smartphone devices among people with SMI. Surveys were administered to 100 patients with SMI at an outpatient psychiatric clinic. Results were compared with respondents to the 2012 Pew Survey of mobile phone usage. Results: A total of 85% of participants reported that they owned a cell phone; of those, 37% reported that they owned a smartphone, as compared with 53% of respondents to the Pew Survey and 44% of socioeconomically disadvantaged respondents to the Pew Survey. Discussion: While cell phone ownership is common among people with SMI, their adoption of smartphone technology lags behind that of the general population primarily due to cost barriers. Efforts to use mHealth in these populations need to recognize current mobile ownership patterns while planning for anticipated expansion of new technologies to poor populations as cost barriers are reduced in the coming years.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 10/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15613236
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    ABSTRACT: Aims: The purpose of this study was to understand the methods of current delivery of health care services to cerebral palsy (CP) patients in Queensland, Australia. The study also examines the current use of telehealth by clinicians and their perceptions about telehealth use. Methods: Patient records during July 2013-July 2014 were accessed from the Queensland Paediatric Rehabilitation Service (QPRS) to collect information relating to the service delivery for CP patients. Analysis was carried out to examine the patient locations and travel distances using ArcMap geoprocessing software. In addition, 13 face-to-face semi structured interviews were conducted with clinicians from the QPRS and the Cerebral Palsy Health Service (CPHS) to understand the perceptions of clinicians relating to the current level of health care delivery. We also examined the clinicians' current use of telehealth and their opinions about this method. Results: Records of 329 paediatric CP patients were accessed and reviewed. The majority of patients (96%, n = 307) who attended the clinics at the Royal Children's Hospital (RCH), Brisbane, were from remote, rural or regional areas of Queensland. Only 4% of patients (n = 13) were from major cities. During 12 months, patients had attended nine outreach programmes that were conducted by the QPRS and CPHS. The study found that non-local patients were required to travel an average distance of 836 km to access QPRS and CPHS services in Brisbane. The average distance for receiving a consultation at an outreach clinic was 173 km. Clinicians perceived that access to health care services to CP patients in Queensland is inadequate. Nearly all clinicians interviewed had some experience in using telehealth. They had high satisfaction levels with the method. Conclusions: Traditional methods of delivering services to CP patients do not meet their needs. Clinicians have found telehealth is a feasible and satisfactory delivery method. However, the use of telehealth is still limited.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 10/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15610720
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    ABSTRACT: Introduction: Bladder cancer is the most costly malignancy to manage per capita due to the technical nature and intensity of follow-up. There are few urologists in rural areas, often necessitating that patients travel hours to receive follow-up care multiple times per year. We plan to train registered nurses and allied health professionals to perform cystoscopies which are monitored and interpreted in real-time by board-certified urologists. The key is to ensure optimal picture resolution to guarantee this technology is not inferior to traditional cystoscopy. Our objective was to develop the technical infrastructure needed for a tele-cystoscopy system through assessment of the transmitted video quality using expert reviewers and crowd-sourcing. Methods: All combinations of the tele-cystoscopy system were systematically tested using a single Thiel cadaver. The videos were reviewed by expert urologists and general reviewers using a crowd-sourcing website. The video quality responses were assessed to determine concordance between each set of reviewers, and to determine the optimal equipment that should be selected for the tele-cystoscopy system. Results: Of eight equipment combinations, only two were of high enough quality to be appropriate for medical use. We found there to be strong concordance of responses between the expert and crowd-sourced responses. The trade-offs between cost and tele-cystoscopy system component quality were compared with efficiency frontiers to elucidate the optimal system. Discussion: We created and tested the feasibility of a tele-cystoscopy system that was deemed suitable for medical diagnosis by a group of experts. We further validated tele-cystoscopy video quality using both experts and recently validated crowd-sourcing.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 10/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15610040
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    ABSTRACT: Previous studies have recognized the potential of mobile technology to improve health outcomes among underserved populations, but the challenges in conducting research into the use of mobile technology to improve health (mHealth) are not well understood. This manuscript identifies some of the most important challenges in conducting mHealth research with a sample of urban American Indian and Alaska Native mothers. We examined these challenges through an existing partnership with a community health agency. We conducted community consultations and a process monitoring phase for a pilot trial aimed at measuring the effect of a brief counselling session on participants' adherence to use of a mobile app. We identify generalizable challenges in administrative, technological, and logistical domains that will be useful foreknowledge to other investigators planning to conduct mHealth research with underserved populations.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 10/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15609853
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    ABSTRACT: Background: A growing number of studies and reviews have documented the impact of telemedicine on diabetes management. However, no meta-analysis has assessed whether including nutritional counseling as part of a telemedicine program has a significant impact on diabetes outcomes or what kind of nutritional counseling is most effective. Methods: Original research articles examining the effect of telemedicine interventions on HbA1c levels in patients with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes were included in this study. A literature search was performed and 92 studies were retained for analysis. We examined stratified results by differentiating interventions using no nutritional counseling from those that used nutritional counseling. We further compared between nutritional counseling administered via short message systems (SMS) such as email and text messages, and nutritional counseling administered via telephone or videoconference. Results: Telemedicine programs that include a nutritional component show similar effect in diabetes management as those programs that do not. Furthermore, subgroup analysis reveals that nutritional intervention via SMS such as email and text messages is at least as equally effective in reducing HbA1c when compared to personal nutritional counseling with a practitioner over videoconference or telephone. Conclusion: The inclusion of nutritional counseling as part of a telemedicine program does not make a significant difference to diabetes outcomes. Incorporating nutritional counseling into telemedicine programs via SMS is at least as effective as counseling via telephone or videoconference.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 10/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15608297
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    ABSTRACT: Tele-ophthalmology using portable retinal imaging technology, mobile phone and Internet connectivity offers a solution to improve access to diabetic retinopathy (DR) screening services in sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries where the burden of diabetes is increasing and there is limited access to eye care services and specialists. The Zimbabwe Retinopathy Telemedicine Project (ZRTP) established routine DR screening at a hospital-based diabetic clinic in the urban capital city, Harare. A handheld 'point and shoot' digital camera operated by a trained nurse was used to acquire retina images of 203 diabetic patients. A secured 'store-and forward' approach was set up and used for sharing and transfer of images to a retinal specialist at a remote site for reading. This method enabled detection of non-macular DR (11%), diabetic macular oedema (5%), cataract (5%) and glaucoma (6%) among the patients screened. ZRTP demonstrated the utility of tele-ophthalmology for routine retinal screening for diabetic patients in Zimbabwe who have limited access to eye care services. In addition, ZRTP showed how tele-ophthalmology services can provide an empirical framework for providing patient education, and a platform for research in the detection of DR. This approach could be used as a model to address the DR challenges in other countries in SSA.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 09/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15604083
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    ABSTRACT: Introduction: E-consultations are asynchronous, text-based consultations. The specialist e-consultant answers clinical questions in a similar way to a standard consultation but the questions and answers are sent electronically. The e-consultant has access to some or all of the medical record but does not have contact with the patient. Although e-consultations are meant to substitute for face-to-face (F2F) consultations, a significant proportion of e-consultations are converted to F2F consultations. Methods: We examined e-consultation content from a sample of e-consultations that had subsequent F2F visits in the same specialty as the e-consultation within 28 days of the e-consultation. Results: Out of 5115 e-consultations, there were a total of 547 (10.7%) early F2F conversions. One hundred and fifty-one e-consultations with subsequent early F2F conversions were reviewed in eight specialties. In 64% of the F2F conversions, specialists recommended the F2F consultations. In 75% there were complex diagnostic or treatment considerations. In only 1% was there a sense of medical urgency or a stated need for physical examination. Discussion: E-consultations convert to F2F consultations primarily at the request of the specialist. Diagnostic and treatment complexity appear to be the main reasons. We found little evidence that patients decided independently to get a F2F visit or that specialists needed a F2F visit to perform a physical examination. Although e-consultations might not be a complete substitute for F2F consultations, they may serve as an entry level consultation that could be supplemented by a video consultation as needed for cases with more diagnostic and treatment complexity.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 09/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15602634
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    ABSTRACT: The objective of this study was to determine if introducing acceptance and commitment therapy in the prevention of mother to child HIV transmission (PMTCT) programme using weekly mobile phone messages would result in improved mental health status of HIV-positive, pregnant women in Nigeria. We used a Solomon four-group (two intervention and two control groups) randomised design. The study population was 144 randomly selected, HIV-positive pregnant women attending four randomly selected PMTCT centres in Nigeria. The intervention groups were exposed to one session of acceptance and commitment therapy with weekly value-based health messages sent by mobile phone for three months during pregnancy. The control groups received only post-HIV test counselling. A total of 132 participants (33 per site) were enrolled in the study from the two intervention and two control sites. In the pre-tests, the intervention and control groups did not differ significantly with regard to demographics. Evaluation of the pre- and post-tests of the intervention group indicated significantly higher Action and Acceptance Questionnaire (AAQ-II) scores. The introduction of a mobile phone acceptance and commitment therapy programme may result in greater psychological flexibility in women diagnosed with HIV.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 09/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15605408
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    ABSTRACT: Introduction: The world population is aging. By 2050, the global population aged over 65 years will have doubled, leading to big societal challenges for ensuring healthy, independent, and productive lives for older people. Thus, innovative local and national initiatives for e-health services are growing in an attempt to overcome such problems. Methods: We examined the effects of a telehealth system, i.e. tele-monitoring of vital parameters and neurological/psychological tele-counseling, within a family-centred service provided by a local day centre. We evaluated the clinical and neurobehavioral symptoms of 18 elderly patients (aged 65 years and over) and the care burden of their 20 caregivers, besides the usability of the tool. Results: The one-way repeated analysis revealed a significant worsening in daily living activities (p < 0.01 and p = 0.02, respectively for Activities of Daily Living (ADL) and Independent IADL (IADL)) versus a significant improvement of the patients' psychiatric condition (p < 0.001), besides a significant gradual reduction of the caregivers burden (p < 0.001). Health status perception increased through time (from an average score of 5.67 ± 1.08 at baseline to 7.72 ± 1.32 at the end of the study). Discussion: It appears that a telehealth system integrated in a local health care service may significantly improve elderly persons' behaviour, and also reduce the caregivers' burden.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 09/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15604290
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    ABSTRACT: Many hospitals have limited inpatient dermatology consultation access. Most dermatologists are outpatient-based and may find the distance and time to complete inpatient consultations prohibitive. Teledermatology may improve access to inpatient dermatology care by reducing barriers of distance and time. We conducted a prospective two-phase pilot study at two academic hospitals comparing time needed to complete inpatient consultations after resident dermatologists initially evaluated patients, called average handling time (AHT), and time needed to respond to the primary team, called time to response (TTR), with and without teledermatology with surveys to capture changes in dermatologist opinion on teledermatology. Teledermatology was only used in the study phase, and patients were seen in-person in both study phases. Teledermatology alone sufficiently answered consultations in 10 of 25 study consultations. The mean AHT in the study phase (sAHT) was 26.9 min compared to the baseline phase (bAHT) of 43.5 min, a 16.6 min reduction (p = 0.004). The 10 study cases where teledermatology alone was sufficient had mean study TTR (sTTR) of 273.3 min compared to a baseline TTR (bTTR) of 405.7 min, a 132.4 min reduction (p = 0.032). Teledermatology reduces the time required for an attending dermatologist to respond and the time required for a primary team to receive a response for an inpatient dermatology consultation in a subset of cases. These findings suggest teledermatology can be used as a tool to improve access to inpatient dermatology care.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 09/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15603298
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    ABSTRACT: The prevalence of ear disease and hearing loss is greater for Indigenous children than for their non-Indigenous counterparts. In 2009, we established a mobile ear-screening service in South Burnett, in which an Indigenous Health Worker (IHW) assesses children at school and shares results by telemedicine with ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialists, who in turn provide review and biannual surgical outreach to the community. We reviewed service data for the first six years of the service (Jan 2009-Dec 2014), to calculate: total number of completed assessments; total number of patients failing at least one screening test; and overall proportion of failed screening assessments per annum. Subgroup analysis was conducted by usual home postcode. The service has provided 5539 screening assessments. The mean screening failure rate for children outside of postcode 4605 (Cherbourg/Murgon area) was 22% (range 17-29%) and 38% for children living inside postcode 4605 (range 34-41%). While screening activity has increased by more than 50% since 2009, there has been a slight reduction in the proportion of children failing assessment, with the mean failure rate changing from 33% in 2009 to 26% in 2014. These early results suggest that community-based screening, integrated with specialist ENT services may improve ear and hearing health.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 09/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15605407
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    ABSTRACT: Little is understood about factors that influence speech-language pathologists' (SLPs') acceptance of telepractice. The aim of this study was to investigate SLPs' perceptions and experiences of transitioning to a school-based telepractice service to identify factors that contributed to positive clinician attitudes. In-depth interviews were conducted with 15 SLPs who recently commenced providing school-based telepractice services. Interviews were recorded and transcribed verbatim and thematic analysis was used to interpret interviews, with themes compared and contrasted across the group. Results indicated that although SLPs reported initially having mixed feelings towards telepractice, they later evaluated telepractice positively and viewed it as a legitimate service delivery mode. The overarching theme was that positive beliefs about telepractice were associated with perceptions of its consistency with the underlying principles of face-to-face therapy. In evaluating telepractice, SLPs considered: (a) therapeutic relationships with children; (b) collaboration with parents and teachers; (c) adequacy of technology and resources; and (d) access to support for learning telepractice. Therapy assistants and specific clinician attributes emerged as key strategies used to manage threats to acceptability. Preparation of SLPs transitioning to telepractice should address factors that support positive experiences with, and attitudes towards, telepractice to ensure that training achieves the greatest, most sustained change.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 09/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15604555
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    ABSTRACT: Introduction: Behavioural interventions have been shown to improve outcomes in patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM). There are a small number of studies that suggest text-messages (TM), native mobile applications (NMAs), and other mobile tools may be useful platforms for delivering behavioural interventions to adolescents. Aim: The aim of this study was to explore, by way of a systematic review of available literature, (a) the outcomes of interventions using mobile technology for youth with T1DM and (b) what mobile technologies, functional design elements and aesthetic design elements have the best evidence to support their use. Methods: A search of six online databases returned 196 unique results, of which 13 met the inclusion criteria. Results: Four studies were randomised controlled trials (RCTs), and all others prospective cohort studies. TM (10) was the most common intervention technology, while NMAs were used in four studies. The most common outcome measured was HbA1c (9); however, only three studies showed a significant decrease. Similarly, the results reported for other outcome measures were mixed. The studies included in this review suggest that interventions which have data collection and clinician support functionality may be more effective in improving adherence and glycaemic control, but more evidence is needed. Further, the evidence base supporting the use of NMAs in T1DM management for adolescents is weak, with most studies adopting TM as the intervention tool. Overall, the studies lack adequate descriptions of their methodology, and better quality studies are required to inform future intervention design.
    Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 09/2015; DOI:10.1177/1357633X15605223