Telemedicine : The Delivery Of Healthcare Services

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According to World Health Organization (2009), telemedicine is defined as, “The delivery of healthcare services, where distance is a critical factor, by all healthcare professionals using information and communication technologies for the exchange of valid information for diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease and injuries, research and evaluation, and for continuing education of healthcare providers, all in the interests of advancing the health of individuals and their communities”. Telemedicine has been defined as the use of telecommunications to provide medical information and services. It may be as simple as two health professionals discussing a case over the telephone, or as sophisticated as using satellite technology to broadcast a consultation between providers at facilities in two countries, using videoconferencing equipment or robotic technology. Telemedicine can be traced back to the mid to late 19th century with one of the first published accounts occurring in the early 20th century when electrocardiograph data were transmitted over telephone wires. Telemedicine, in its modern form, started in the 1960s in large part driven by the military and space technology sectors, as well as a few individuals using readily available commercial equipment. Examples of early technological milestones in telemedicine include the use of television to facilitate consultations between specialists at a psychiatric institute and general practitioners at a state mental
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