Treating acute infections by telemedicine in the home

Lawrence Eron, Paula King, Michelle Marineau, Cyndee Yonehara
Clinical Infectious Diseases 2004 October 15, 39 (8): 1175-81
Patients with community-acquired pneumonia, cellulitis, or urinary tract infection may be treated either in the hospital or as outpatients, depending on the severity of their disease, comorbidities, and Karnofsky performance status. To more efficiently use hospital beds, we discharge many moderately to severely ill patients with acute infections directly from the emergency department or early in the course of hospitalization. To insure satisfactory clinical outcomes, we use telemedicine in the home to monitor patients who would normally be hospitalized. Patients treated with telemedicine have satisfactory clinical outcomes, and their recovery appears to be more rapid than comparable hospitalized patients. Telemedicine in the home results in considerable savings by averting or shortening hospital stays.

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