Randomised controlled trial of telemedicine for new neurological outpatient referrals

Chua, R, Craig, J, Wootton, R and Patterson, V (2001) Randomised controlled trial of telemedicine for new neurological outpatient referrals. Journal of Neurology Neurosurgery And Psychiatry, 71 1: 63-66. doi:10.1136/jnnp.71.1.63

Author Chua, R
Craig, J
Wootton, R
Patterson, V
Title Randomised controlled trial of telemedicine for new neurological outpatient referrals
Journal name Journal of Neurology Neurosurgery And Psychiatry   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0022-3050
Publication date 2001
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1136/jnnp.71.1.63
Volume 71
Issue 1
Start page 63
End page 66
Total pages 4
Editor C Kennard
Place of publication United Kingdom
Publisher B M J Publishing Group
Collection year 2001
Language eng
Subject C1
329999 Medical and Health Sciences not elsewhere classified
730199 Clinical health not specific to particular organs, diseases and conditions
Abstract Objective-To test the hypothesis that telemedicine for new patient referrals to neurological outpatients is as efficient and acceptable as conventional face to face consultation. Methods-A randomised controlled trial between two groups: face to face (FF) and telemedicine (TM). This study was carried out between a neurological centre and outlying clinics at two distant hospitals linked by identical medium cost commercial interactive video conferencing equipment with ISDN lines transmitting information at 384 kbits/s. The same two neurologists carried out both arms of the study. Of the 168 patients who were suitable for the study, 86 were randomised into the telemedicine group and 82 into the face to face group. Outcome measures were (I) consultation process: (a) number of investigations; (b) number of drugs prescribed; (c) number of patient reviews and (2) patient satisfaction: (a) confidence in consultation; (b) technical aspects of consultation; (c) aspects surrounding confidentiality. Diagnostic categories were also measured to check equivalence between the groups: these were structural neurological, structural non-neurological, nonstructural, and uncertain. Results-Diagnostic categories were similar (p>0.5) between the two groups. Patients in the telemedicine group had significantly more investigations (p=0.001). There was no difference in the number of drugs prescribed (p>0.5). Patients were generally satisfied with both types of consultation process except for concerns about confidentiality and embarrassment in the telemedicine group (p=0.017 and p=0.005 respectively). Conclusion-Telemedicine for new neurological outpatients is possible and feasible but generates more investigations and is less well accepted than face to face examination.
Keyword Clinical Neurology
Randomised Controlled Trial
Q-Index Code C1

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: Centre for Online Health Publications
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Created: Tue, 14 Aug 2007, 16:06:27 EST