Case report: an example of international telemedicine success
ABSTRACT An 8-month old girl presented to the Angkor Hospital for Children in Siem Riep, Cambodia with fevers, bilateral eye discharge and an extensive body rash. The rash consisted of large, fluid-filled bullae and significant desquamation. The patient was admitted to the hospital and given intravenous cloxacillin for presumed bullous impetigo. Despite treatment with antibiotics, the skin lesions did not improve and the fevers continued. Telemedicine consultations were initiated by email between Angkor Hospital for Children and paediatric specialists in the USA. Several diagnoses were entertained throughout the subsequent collaborative dialogue. Ultimately, teleconsultation led to a diagnosis of chronic bullous dermatosis of childhood (CBDC), a rare sub-epidermal blistering disease. The child was started on appropriate medications. Within 24 hours, the lesions showed significant improvement and fevers resolved. By enabling advice from distant providers on diagnosis and treatment of paediatric patients, telemedicine may improve health care in developing countries.
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ABSTRACT: We established a hybrid telepathology network at the Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) in Cambodia, based on store-and-forward communication using iPATH and videoconferencing using Skype. We retrospectively analysed all data from the CSC stored on the iPATH server and reviewed the patient notes over an 8-month period. Of 115 patients for histopathology diagnosis during the study period, 38 cases were uploaded onto iPATH for further telemedicine discussion. The median number of days it took a specialist, other than the local one, to comment on the case on iPATH was 5 days (range 0-15). In three cases (8%) there was no reply from a specialist on iPATH. During the study period, seven clinical conferences were held, with an average of 6 cases (range 4-7) discussed at each conference. All 38 cases discussed had a final agreed diagnosis and firm management plans were made. Of the 24 cases where proactive management was advised, 17 patients followed through with the recommendations. Although the combination of video consultations and store-and-forward communication has not been used much before in the developing world, it has benefited patient care and outcomes at the CSC.Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare 11/2013; 19(8). DOI:10.1177/1357633X13512071 · 1.74 Impact Factor
Revue de Pneumologie Clinique 04/2013; 69(2):119–120. DOI:10.1016/j.pneumo.2013.01.004 · 0.19 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Abstract Objective: Many developing countries have shown interest in embracing telemedicine and incorporating it into their healthcare systems. In 2000, the U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground (YPG) initiated a program to assist the Republic of Panama in establishing a demonstration Panamanian rural telemedicine program. YPG engaged the Arizona Telemedicine Program (ATP) to participate in the development and implementation of the program. Materials and Methods: The ATP recommended adoption of a "top-down" strategy for creating the program. Early buy-in of the Panamanian Ministry of Health and academic leaders was regarded as critical to the achievement of long-term success. Results: High-level meetings with the Minister of Health and the Rectors (i.e., Presidents) of the national universities gained early program support. A telemedicine demonstration project was established on a mountainous Indian reservation 230 miles west of Panama City. Today, three rural telemedicine clinics are linked to a regional Ministry of Health hospital for teleconsultations. Real-time bidirectional videoconferencing utilizes videophones connected over Internet protocol networks at a data rate of 768 kilobits per second to the San Felix Hospital. Telepediatrics, tele-obstetrics, telepulmonology, teledermatology, and tele-emergency medicine services became available. Telemedicine services were provided to the three sites for a total of 1,013 cases, with numbers of cases increasing each year. These three demonstration sites remained in operation after discontinuation of the U.S. involvement in September 2009 and serve as a model program for other telemedicine initiatives in Panama. Conclusions: Access to the assets of a partner-nation was invaluable in the establishment of the first model telemedicine demonstration program in Panama. After 3 years, the Panamanian Telemedicine and Telehealth Program (PTTP) became self-sufficient. The successful achievement of sustainability of the PTTP after disengagement by the United States fits the Latifi-Weinstein model for establishing telemedicine programs in developing countries.Telemedicine and e-Health 08/2013; 19(10). DOI:10.1089/tmj.2013.0025 · 1.40 Impact Factor