Fast-forward to 2014. Dermatologists share digital images via email and a number of social networks thousands of times a day. If the specialty is cheapened, I can safely say it is not due to this activity. So far, we’ve not created any ‘cutaneous radiologists’ which was another fear of nay sayers at the time. In fact, the American Academy of Dermatology has an officially sponsored software application that members can use to provide volunteer teledermatology services to underserved clinics, and is planning on promoting this concept in the coming year. What a difference 15 years makes!
I use this story to set context for a thoughtful discussion on one of the most controversial telemedicine questions of our current time. Is it safe and effective care for providers to evaluate and prescribe for patients that they’ve never met face-to-face?
Join me in thinking through this question.
1. Most health care requires…
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