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1.  Innovation Networks for Improving Access and Quality Across the Healthcare Ecosystem 
Telemedicine Journal and e-Health  2010;16(1):107-111.
Abstract
Partnerships between patient communities, healthcare providers, and academic researchers are key to stepping up the pace and public health impact of clinical and translational research supported by the National Institutes of Health. With emphasis shifting toward community engagement and faster translation of research advances into clinical practice, academic researchers have a vital stake in widening the use of health information technology systems and telehealth networks to support collaboration and innovation. However, limited interaction between academic institutions and healthcare providers hinders the ability to form and sustain the integrated networks that are needed to conduct meaningful community-engaged research that improves public health outcomes. Healthcare providers, especially those affiliated with smaller practices, will need sustainable infrastructure and real incentives to utilize such networks, as well as training and additional resources for ongoing technical assistance.
doi:10.1089/tmj.2009.0157
PMCID: PMC3016866  PMID: 20043702
business administration/economics; distance learning; e-health; home health monitoring; policy
2.  Internet based consultations to transfer knowledge for patients requiring specialised care: retrospective case review 
BMJ : British Medical Journal  2003;326(7391):696-699.
Objective
To assess whether transferring knowledge from specialists at centres of excellence to referring doctors through online consultations can improve the management of patients requiring specialised care.
Design
Retrospective case review of the first year of internet based patient initiated consultations between referring doctors and consulting specialists.
Setting
US teaching hospitals affiliated with an organisation providing internet based consultations.
Participants
Doctors in various settings around the world engaging in internet based consultations with specialists.
Main outcome measures
New recommendations for treatment, change in diagnosis, and turnaround time for consultation compared with time to see a specialist.
Results
79 consultations took place. 90% (n=71) of consultations were for services related to oncology. 90% of consultations involved new recommendations for treatment. The most common recommendation was a new chemotherapeutic regimen (68%, n=54). Diagnosis changed in 5% (n=4) of cases. The average turnaround time was 6.8 working days compared with an average of 19 working days to see a comparable specialist.
Conclusions
Internet based consultations between specialists at centres of excellence and referring doctors contribute to patient care through recommendations for new treatment and timely access to specialist knowledge. Although change in diagnosis occurred in only a few cases, the prognostic and therapeutic implications for these patients may be profound.
What is already known on this topicTelemedicine could improve health care by transferring knowledge from centres of excellence to patients' doctorsFew studies have systematically assessed the value of such internet based specialty consultationsWhat this study addsPatients can benefit from internet based consultations between their doctor and consulting specialistsNew recommendations for treatment were discussed in 90% of cases, and change in diagnosis occurred in 5% of casesPatients can access a specialist's opinion more quickly than waiting to see a specialist
PMCID: PMC152369  PMID: 12663408

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