Telemedicine and doctor-patient communication: a theoretical framework for evaluation

J Telemed Telecare. 2002;8(6):311-8. doi: 10.1258/135763302320939185.


The literature on doctor-patient communication demonstrates that patient, provider and contextual characteristics influence behaviour within medical encounters, which in turn is an important determinant of health outcomes. This paper introduces a conceptual model which posits that telemedicine affects health outcomes through changes in the way doctors and patients communicate with one another. It also proposes that this process depends on the medium through which the consultation takes place, whether in person, over the telephone, via fax or email, or through two-way interactive video. Since participants in two-way interactive video-consultations rarely meet in person, it is particularly important that the effect of substituting video for face-to-face consultations be delineated.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Attitude to Health
  • Communication*
  • Humans
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Physician-Patient Relations*
  • Telemedicine*