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UC Davis Children's Hospital Study Finds Telemedicine Consultations Significantly Improve Pediatric Care in Rural Emergency Rooms
Date:8/8/2013

Sacramento, CA (PRWEB) August 08, 2013

Telemedicine consultations with pediatric critical-care medicine physicians significantly improve the quality of care for seriously ill and injured children treated in remote rural emergency rooms, where pediatricians and pediatric specialists are scarce, a study by researchers at UC Davis Children’s Hospital has found.

The study also found that rural emergency room physicians are more likely to adjust their pediatric patients’ diagnoses and course of treatment after a live, interactive videoconference with a specialist. Parents’ satisfaction and perception of the quality of their child’s care also are significantly improved when consultations are provided using telemedicine, rather than telephone, and aid emergency room treatment, the study found.

The research is published online today in Critical Care Medicine.

“The bottom line is that this readily available technology can and should be used to improve the quality of care delivered to critically ill children when there are no pediatric specialists available in their own communities,” said James Marcin, director of the UC Davis Children’s Hospital Pediatric Telemedicine Program and the study’s senior author.

“People say a picture is worth a thousand words,” said Marcin, professor in the Department of Pediatrics, “With medicine, video conferencing brings us right to the bedside, allowing us to see what’s happening and collaborate with on-site doctors to provide the best possible care to our patients.”

The use of technology to link far-distant practitioners has been steadily increasing in American medicine, particularly as a tool to provide rural and underserved communities with access to specialty physicians. More recently, telemedicine has been used for consultations to emergency rooms, and is particularly recommended for use in the area of stroke care.

Despite the expansion of telemed
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