EVALUATING TELEMEDICINE IN RURAL SETTINGS: ISSUES AND APPLICATIONS

Changes in health care policies, demographics, and technology have presented new opportunities for the delivery of medical care services and information to rural communities. Telemedicine—the use of electronic information and communications technologies to provide and support health care when distances separates the participants—is one technology that has impacted the efficiency of delivery of rural health care services. This paper presents an overview of the telemedicine technologies, government involvement in support of telemedicine, evaluation efforts to date for these technologies, and issues that need to be addressed in designing an economic-based framework to evaluate the net benefits of telemedicine technologies to rural communities and consumers. An evaluation framework needs to be capable of quantifying the tradeoffs among access to health care services, the costs of delivery of a given level of services, and changes in the quality of the service that is being delivered via electronic communications; and how these tradeoffs shift as the level of telemedicine and the technology changes. The framework that is proposed is based on models of consumer behavior that incorporate discrete choices among quality differentiated sites.


Issue Date:
1998
Publication Type:
Working or Discussion Paper
PURL Identifier:
http://purl.umn.edu/29240
Total Pages:
35
JEL Codes:
I1
Series Statement:
Research Discussion Paper 23




 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2017-08-24

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