ABSTRACT: Abstract The purpose of this document is to provide an overview of a collaboration science process used to develop recommendations for the field of telemental health (TMH) in the selection of outcome measures that best reflect programmatic impacts. A common use of group development techniques in medicine is the development of clinical guidelines, which typically occurs using one of two methods: the nominal group or the Delphi method. Both processes have been faulted for limited transparency, reliability, and sustainability. Recommendations to improve the traditional process include making goals explicit, making disagreements transparent, and publicly displaying levels of agreement. A group of 26 TMH experts convened during the American Telemedicine Association's 2012 Fall Forum in New Orleans, LA to participate in a 1-day, interactive, consensus-building workshop to initiate the development of a shared lexicon of outcomes. The workshop method was designed to improve on traditional methods of guideline development by focusing on clarity of expectations, transparency, and timeliness of group development work. Results suggest that, compared with other traditional methods, the current process involved more people, occurred more rapidly, was more transparent, and resulted in a comparable deliverable. Recommendations for further process development, both within and external to TMH, as well as an initial overview of defined outcome measures are discussed.
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