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Clinical Trial
. 2000;6(2):97-101.
doi: 10.1258/1357633001935112.

Patient Cost-Benefits of Realtime Teledermatology--A Comparison of Data From Northern Ireland and New Zealand

Affiliations
Clinical Trial

Patient Cost-Benefits of Realtime Teledermatology--A Comparison of Data From Northern Ireland and New Zealand

A M Oakley et al. J Telemed Telecare. .

Abstract

As part of a randomized controlled trial of the costs and benefits of realtime teledermatology in comparison with conventional face-to-face appointments, patients were asked to complete a questionnaire at the end of their consultation. One hundred and nine patients took part in an initial teledermatology consultation and 94 in a face-to-face consultation. The proportion of patients followed up by the dermatologist was almost the same after teledermatology (24%) as after a hospital appointment (26%) and for similar reasons. Two hundred and three questionnaires were completed after the first visit and a further 20 after subsequent visits. Patients seen by teledermatology at their own health centre travelled an average of 12 km, whereas those who attended a conventional clinic travelled an average of 271 km. The telemedicine group spent an average of 51 min attending the appointment compared with 4.3 h for those seen at the hospital. The results of the present study, as in a similar study conducted in Northern Ireland, show that the economic benefits of teledermatology favour the patient rather than the health-care system.

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