Ethical practice in Telehealth and Telemedicine

JGIM, 2017, 32(10), 1136-1140
Authors: Danielle Chaet, Ron Clearfield, James E. Sabin, Kathryn Skimming, on behalf of the Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs American Medical Association
“This article summarizes the report of the American Medical Association’s (AMA) Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs (CEJA) on ethical practice in telehealth and telemedicine. Through its reports and recommendations, CEJA is responsible for maintaining and updating the AMA Code of Medical Ethics (Code).”
Find article here.

A thousand words in the palm of your hand: management of clinical photography on personal mobile devices

Med J Aust 2016; 205 (11): 499-500.
Authors: Kieran G Allen, Paul Eleftheriou, John Ferguson
“Opportunities to optimise patient care have been enhanced by this immediate transfer of accurate and relevant clinical images. Despite these benefits, photographic documentation of the patient’s condition on PMDs creates a sensitive personal record on inherently insecure devices when the patient is vulnerable. This exposes patients to an ongoing risk of potentially serious consequences and psychological harm in the event of illicit publication. Health care organisations must ensure that security is a paramount concern and that their clinicians obtain consent appropriately to minimise the risk of a breach of patient confidentiality.”
Find article here.

Teledermatology and clinical photography: safeguarding patient privacy and mitigating medico-legal risk

Med J Aust 2016; 204 (5): 198-200.
Authors: Paul Stevenson, Anna R Finnane and H Peter Soyer
“Capturing clinical images is becoming more prevalent in everyday clinical practice, and dermatology lends itself to the use of clinical photographs and teledermatology. “Store-and-forward”, whereby clinical images are forwarded to a specialist who later responds with an opinion on diagnosis and management is a popular form of teledermatology. …Failing to use appropriate security precautions poses an emerging medico-legal risk for practitioners.”
Find abstract here.

AMA holds off on setting telemedicine ethics policy

Modern Healthcare, 16 November 2015
Author: Andis Robeznieks
“The American Medical Association House of Delegates decided Monday that proposed recommendations for ethical practices in telemedicine did not clearly address medical liability concerns and sent them back to the authors for more work.Along with the liability concerns, the committee found that some recommendations were impractical for specialists such as pathologists and radiologists.”
Find article here.

Promoting a “clinical” approach to the taking and transmission of clinical images

AMA, statement 21/11/2014
“The AMA today released a new guide for medical students and doctors on the proper use of personal mobile devices – including smart phones, cameras, tablets, laptops, and portable music devices – when taking and transmitting clinical images.”
Find statement and link to guide here.

Planned Parenthood Fights Iowa ‘Telemedicine Abortion’ Rule (1)

Blooomberg News, By Andrew Harris, September 30, 2013

“Planned Parenthood’s Iowa affiliate said it’s suing to throw out a state rule that would end“telemedicine abortion,” the practice of letting doctors remotely dispense pregnancy-terminating drugs.  Planned Parenthood of the Heartland Inc. said today that the case was filed in state court in Des Moines. The filing couldn’t immediately be verified in electronic court records.”

Find article here.

Diagnostic inaccuracy of smartphone applications for melanoma detection

Croakey, the Crikey health blog, online 23 January 2013
Author: Michelle Hughes
“Last week JAMA Dermatology published an interesting study into the accuracy of smart phone applications in diagnosing melanoma: Diagnostic Inaccuracy of Smartphone Applications for Melanoma Detection (Wolf et al 2013).  Smart phones have amazing potential to improve access to healthcare and health information. The question arises with the results of this study – how do we protect consumers as we do so? Read the article here.”
Find posting here.

Progress Report 2012: Health care renewal in Canada

Health Council of Canada 4 June 2012
“Today, the Health Council of Canada releases Progress Report 2012: Health care renewal in Canada, highlighting the progress achieved by governments to date in five key areas: home and community care, health human resources, telehealth, access to care in the North, and comparable health indicators since the 2003 health accord was signed.”
Read press release here and report here.