Study: Telemedicine May Reduce Errors in Rural EDs

Virtual consultations with remote physicians were associated with better outcomes for pediatric patients visiting rural emergency departments in a study published in Pediatrics.

Researchers conducted retrospective chart reviews for 234 seriously ill or injured pediatric patients at eight rural EDs where physicians have access to telemedicine consultations with pediatric critical care physicians at an academic children's hospital to investigate the association between remote consults and medication errors.

Results showed medication errors occurred with 12.5 percent of the patients who received no consultation, 10.8 percent of patients who received a telephone consultation and 3.4 percent of patients who received video-based telemedicine consultations. Researchers concluded telemedicine consultations were linked to a reduced risk of medication errors among these patients.

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