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June 2018

The Role of Telehealth in the Medical Response to Disasters

Author Affiliations
  • 1Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 2Sidney Kimmel Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
JAMA Intern Med. 2018;178(6):745-746. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2018.1314

Use of telehealth,1 or technologies to support and promote long-distance clinical care, education, and health administration, has increased dramatically in the past decade. Common modalities include live video teleconferencing, store-and-forward technology (eg, radiograph readings), remote patient monitoring (eg, telehealth coverage of intensive care units), mobile health applications, text, and email. The frequency and severity of disasters—or events that cause damage, ecological disruption, loss of human life, or deterioration of health and health services that warrant a response from outside the affected community—have also increased over the same period.

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