Limitations of Patient Satisfaction Studies in Telehealthcare: A Systematic Review of the Literature
ABSTRACT The objective of this study is to provide a systematic review of studies on patient satisfaction with telemedicine. The review included empirical studies that investigated patient satisfaction with that telemedicine service. The search strategy involved matching at least one of 11 'telemedicine' terms with one of 5 'satisfaction' terms. The following databases were searched: Telemedicine Information Exchange (TIE) database, MEDLINE, Science Citation Index (SCI), Social Science Citation Index (SSCI), Psycinfo, and Citation Index of Nursing and Allied Health (CINAHL). A highly structured instrument was used for data extraction. The review included 93 studies. Telepsychiatry represents the largest portion of these studies (25%), followed by multispecialty care (14%), nursing (11%), and dermatology (8%). Real-time videoconferencing was used in 88% of these studies. Only 19 (20%) included an independent control group, including 9 (10%) randomized control trial (RCT) studies. One third of studies were based on samples of less than 20 patients, and only 21% had samples of over 100 patients. Aspects of patient satisfaction most commonly assessed were: professional-patient interaction, the patient's feeling about the consultation, and technical aspects of the consultation. Only 33% of the studies included a measure of preference between telemedicine and face-to-face consultation. Almost half the studies measured only 1 or 2 dimensions of satisfaction. Reported levels of satisfaction with telemedicine are consistently greater than 80%, and frequently reported at 100%. Progression of telemedicine services from "trial" status to routine health service must be supported by improved research into patients' satisfaction with telemedicine. Further investigation of factors that influence patient acceptance of telemedicine is indicated.
Full-textDOI: · Available from: Carl May, Apr 13, 2015
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- "Reported benefits include reduced waiting times, less need for travel and time off work, and greater overall convenience. However, the methodology of many patient satisfaction studies has been weak (Williams et al. 2001), in keeping with patient satisfaction research more generally (Sitzia 1999). "
ABSTRACT: Many Australians have limited access to health-care services due to a range of barriers, including geographic distance and restricted mobility, which telehealth can potentially address. This paper reviews the current and potential use of video consultation in primary health care in Australia, drawing on international literature. There is substantial evidence of high patient satisfaction, but many studies have methodological limitations. Overall, evidence of effectiveness and cost-effectiveness is weak. There is reasonable evidence for diagnosis, home care and specialist consultations by GPs with patients present. Two telehealth initiatives using video consultation are briefly presented. Both provide evidence that video consultation has a valuable role to play, but does not obviate the need for face-to-face consultations. Video consultation challenges traditional professional roles, particularly those of nurses, and can improve health workers' skills and job satisfaction. More fundamentally, telehealth challenges the traditional distinction between primary and secondary care. This can be a source of resistance but may ultimately be one of its strengths. Appropriately targeted video consultation has much potential to improve the delivery of primary health care in Australia, particularly in rural and remote regions.Australian Journal of Primary Health 10/2013; 19(4). DOI:10.1071/PY13032 · 1.22 Impact Factor
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- "Some of the studies included in the reviews did not report power calculations, placing them at risk of Type II errors . Often reviews contained studies that were not randomised or that were designed as observational studies, pilot studies or pre-post studies, limiting the weight that can be given to their conclusions , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . A number of reviews did not clearly detail the study designs of all the included studies , , , , , , , , , , , , , . "
ABSTRACT: Telehealthcare involves the use of information and communication technologies to deliver healthcare at a distance and to support patient self-management through remote monitoring and personalised feedback. It is timely to scrutinise the evidence regarding the benefits, risks and costs of telehealthcare. Two reviewers searched for relevant systematic reviews published from January 1997 to November 2011 in: The Cochrane Library, MEDLINE, EMBASE, LILACS, IndMed and PakMed. Reviewers undertook independent quality assessment of studies using the Critical Appraisal Skills Programme (CASP) tool for systematic reviews. 1,782 review articles were identified, from which 80 systematic reviews were selected for inclusion. These covered a range of telehealthcare models involving both synchronous (live) and asynchronous (store-and-forward) interactions between provider and patients. Many studies showed no differences in outcomes between telehealthcare and usual care. Several reviews highlighted the large number of short-term (<12 months) feasibility studies with under 20 participants. Effects of telehealthcare on health service indicators were reported in several reviews, particularly reduced hospitalisations. The reported clinical effectiveness of telehealthcare interventions for patients with long-term conditions appeared to be greatest in those with more severe disease at high-risk of hospitalisation and death. The failure of many studies to adequately describe the intervention makes it difficult to disentangle the contributions of technological and human/organisational factors on the outcomes reported. Evidence on the cost-effectiveness of telehealthcare remains sparse. Patient safety considerations were absent from the evaluative telehealthcare literature. Policymakers and planners need to be aware that investment in telehealthcare will not inevitably yield clinical or economic benefits. It is likely that the greatest gains will be achieved for patients at highest risk of serious outcomes. There is a need for longer-term studies in order to determine whether the benefits demonstrated in time limited trials are sustained.PLoS ONE 08/2013; 8(8):e71238. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0071238 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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- "Patient preferences and satisfaction are important for implementing a new examination technique such as teleophthalmology, as these opinions will help shape and improve the model. Currently there are a handful of studies comparing patient satisfaction between face-to-face consultations and telemedicine.616 In 2006, Kumari Rani and colleagues,6 noted that 99% of their patients were satisfied with their teleophthalmology screening. "
ABSTRACT: To assess patient preference for diabetic retinopathy (DR) screening with teleophthalmology or face-to-face ophthalmologist evaluation in Nairobi, Kenya. Fifty seven diabetic patients from a one-stop multidisciplinary diabetic clinic (consisting of a diabetologist, nurse educator, foot specialist, nutritionist, ophthalmologist, and neurologist) in Nairobi, Kenya were included if they had undergone both a teleophthalmology (stereoscopic digital retinal photographs graded by an ophthalmologist remotely) and a traditional clinical screening exam (face to face examination). A structured questionnaire with a 5-point Likert scale was developed in both English and Swahili. The questionnaire was administered over the telephone. Ten questions were used to compare patient experience and preferences between teleophthalmology and a traditional clinical examination for DR. A mean score >3.25 on the Likert scale was considered favourable. Successfully telephone contact was possible for 26 (58% male, 42% females) of the 57 patients. The mean ages of the male and female patients were 52.4 and 46.5 years respectively. Patients were satisfied with their teleophthalmology examination (mean 4.15 ± 0.97). Patients preferred the teleophthalmology option for future screenings (mean 3.42 ± 1.52). This preference was driven primarily by convenience, reduced examination time, and being able to visualize their own retina. In this study, diabetic patients preferred a teleophthalmology based screening over a traditional ophthalmologist-based screening. The use of teleophthalmology in Africa warrants further study and has the potential to become the screening model of choice. Cost effectiveness in comparison to an ophthalmologist-based screening also requires evaluation.Middle East African journal of ophthalmology 03/2013; 20(1):56-60. DOI:10.4103/0974-9233.106388