Thursday, January 28, 2010

Telemedicine for Diabetic Teaching

This study demonstrated that diabetic teaching using via video conferencing based telemedicine was as effective as in-person teaching in improving control and patient satisfaction.

The advantage that diabetic teaching via telemedicine offers over the traditional face to face encounter, is the ability to deploy essential diabetic teaching across a wider region, thus solving the problem of access that many patients face.

Ideally, I envision that a patient should be able to visit their physician , and then from the same office visit, access the diabetic trainer via the video conferencing. Toward the end of the session, the patient and the remotely located diabetic educator would do a recap with the physician in order to insure the everyone is on the same page. This would be a way to decrease the level of fragmentation that can exist in diabetic care when multiple providers are involved.

The results of the study are listed below:

RESULTS—Patient satisfaction was high in the telemedicine group. Problem Areas in Diabetes scale scores improved significantly with diabetes education (adjusted P <>1c improved from 8.6 ± 1.8% at baseline to 7.8 ± 1.5% immediately after education and 7.8 ± 1.8% 3 months after the third educational visit (unadjusted P <>P = 0.089 adjusted for BMI and age), with similar changes observed in the telemedicine and in-person groups.

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