Potential role of telecommunication technologies in the management of chronic health conditions

Joseph Finkelstein, Robert H. Friedman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

During the twentieth century, chronic health conditions (which include both chronic diseases and impairments), became the major cause of illness, disability and death in developed countries. The high prevalence of chronic conditions among the elderly, combined with a rapidly growing population of elderly people, is expected to dramatically increase the absolute numbers of people with chronic care needs in the twenty-first century. This article provides a comprehensive analysis of recent technological developments which have stimulated the use of telecommunication technologies in healthcare delivery to persons with chronic illnesses. Although the potential of this approach has been well recognised since the early 1960s, limitations of early telecommunication technologies (such as absence of common protocols), restricted accessibility, and high cost prevented their widespread use. The Internet and World Wide Web technologies, deployment of high-speed telecommunications networks coupled with a decline in their operating costs, and invention of devices capable of capturing and transmitting data from patients' homes are discussed in terms of their impact on chronic disease care. Healthcare delivery applications in 3 major areas (primary prevention and early disease detection, chronic disease control and symptom management, personal and social support) where use of telecommunication systems in the management of chronic medical conditions have been shown to be effective are reviewed. We conclude that the use of telecommunication technologies in the management of chronic diseases will likely expand rapidly during the early twenty-first century with the expectation that these systems will have a significant impact on quality of life and healthcare costs of patients with chronic conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-63
Number of pages7
JournalDisease Management and Health Outcomes
Volume8
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes

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Telecommunications
Chronic Disease
Technology
Health
Internet
Delivery of Health Care
Costs and Cost Analysis
Computer Communication Networks
Quality of Health Care
Primary Prevention
Developed Countries
Social Support
Health Care Costs
Early Diagnosis
Quality of Life
Equipment and Supplies
Population

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Nursing(all)

Cite this

Potential role of telecommunication technologies in the management of chronic health conditions. / Finkelstein, Joseph; Friedman, Robert H.

In: Disease Management and Health Outcomes, Vol. 8, No. 2, 2000, p. 57-63.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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