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Dejaco, C; Landewe, RBM.
Controversies in rheumatology: telemedicine-friend or foe?
RHEUMATOLOGY. 2023; Doi: 10.1093/rheumatology/keac708
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Führende Autor*innen der Med Uni Graz
Dejaco Christian

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Telemedicine is increasingly used in rheumatology. While telemedicine guaranteed care of patients during the COVID-19 pandemic, it is now increasingly used to facilitate triage of patients, monitoring of disease activity, and patients' education. In addition, tele-visits as well as remote physio- and psychotherapy are replacing traditional face-to-face contacts between patients and their healthcare provider. While this may save resources in a world in which the gap between the demand and the provision of healthcare increases, there is also a danger of losing essential information, for example by non-verbal communication, that can only be retrieved during face-to-face contact in the office. In addition, it may be challenging to build a trusting relationship between patients and healthcare professionals by virtual means only. Globally acting companies that see market opportunities already amply offer 'simple' technical solutions for telemedicine. While such solutions may seem (economically) interesting at first glance, there is a risk of monopolization, leaving the most valuable parts of healthcare to a small number of profit-seeking companies. In this article, the opportunities and threats of telemedicine in rheumatology are debated. A possible way forward is to complement traditional face-to-face visits with information gained by telemedicine, in order to render these consultations more efficient rather than replacing personal contact by technology.

Find related publications in this database (Keywords)
quality of health care
health policies
education (patients)
quality of life
information science
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