A Blueprint for the Conduct of Large, Multisite Trials in Telemedicine

J Med Internet Res. 2021 Sep 20;23(9):e29511. doi: 10.2196/29511.


Recent literature supports the efficacy and efficiency of telemedicine in improving various health outcomes despite the wide variability in results. Understanding site-specific issues in the implementation of telemedicine trials for broader replication and generalizability of results is needed. Lessons can be learned from existing trials, and a blueprint can guide researchers to conduct these challenging studies using telemedicine more efficiently and effectively. This viewpoint presents relevant challenges and solutions for conducting multisite telemedicine trials using 7 ongoing and completed studies funded by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute portfolio of large multisite trials to highlight the challenges in implementing telemedicine trials. Critical issues of ensuring leadership and buy-in, appropriate funding, and diverse and representative trials are identified and described, as well as challenges related to clinical, informatics, regulatory, legal, quality, and billing. The lessons learned from these studies were used to create a blueprint of key aspects to consider for the design and implementation of multisite telemedicine trials.

Keywords: challenges; mobile phone; multisite; randomized trials; telemedicine trials.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Trials as Topic / methods
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic / methods
  • Research Personnel
  • Telemedicine*