Teledermatology makes 3 promises: better, cheaper, and faster dermatologic care. It is “better” because, although it cannot offer as much to the patient as a traditional visit, it extends the dermatologist's reach to places and in ways not previously possible as a result of time and place limitations; it is “cheaper and faster” because it has the potential to reduce costs and increase efficiency for both patients and providers. For teledermatology to fulfill these promises, it must enable dermatologists to improve access by increasing the number of patients evaluated and treated. Increased patient access depends on maximizing a scarce resource–dermatologists' time–in part by avoiding unnecessary and time-consuming face-to-face appointments. We examined the literature to date to determine which teledermatology programs have greater or lesser success in reducing face-to-face visits. Our review highlights 4 factors that are associated with a higher number of face-to-face appointments avoided by teledermatology programs: (1) effective preselection of patients for teleconsultation, (2) high-quality photographic images, (3) dermoscopy if pigmented lesions are evaluated, and (4) effective infrastructure and culture in place to implement teleconsultation recommendations.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Key words : access, appointments avoided, store-and-forward dermatology, teledermatology, telehealth, telemedicine
| Ms Mateus' fellowship funded by New England Veterans Engineering Resource Center.
| Conflicts of interest: None declared.
| The views expressed in this article of those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the position or policy of the Department of Veterans Affairs.