Role of Visual Communications in Home Telehealth

M.A. Hebert (Canada)


Home telehealth; home care; point of care


Health care delivery faces many challenges, including the need for health human resources to meet the ever increasing demand for care in the community. In addition, traditional home care services have been changing as a result of a number of factors, which may be addressed through telehealth. Telehealth technology has the potential to increase access to health services, education and care. Even though technology is available, implementation requires changes to professional practice and organization of care as illustrated in a recent study of palliative home care. The additional visual component of home telehealth may be useful in meeting identified capacity gaps in new ways through new approaches to care. Two applications are already well recognized as important tools in community care: use of digital images for wound management and videophone technology. Additional electronic tools introduced into health care practice create other changes, such as visible accountability. Increasing scrutiny around professional judgement and action becomes possible, which may influence the adoption of these technologies.

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