Telemedicine in neurosurgery during SARS-CoV2 Pandemic

Maria Golebiowska, Beata Golebiowska

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12775/JEHS.2020.10.12.020

Abstract


Introduction and purpose

First large scale introduction and research of telecommunication in medicine was conducted in year 1977. However, until current SARS-CoV-2 Pandemic, telemedicine has been used only in emergency interventions or in cases in which only remote healthcare provision services were available. Healthcare was forced to implement telemedical changes in a scale broader beyond imagination, in order to limit the risk of COVID transmission and preserve the scarce healthcare resources. Especially in surgical fields, such as neurosurgery, which strongly depend on on-site procedures, this time has been extremely demanding. The aim of the study is to present the current views and effectiveness of implementation of telemedicine in neurosurgery during SARS-CoV2 pandemic. Substantial articles on implementation and challenges of telemedicine in neurosurgery from period 02.2020-09.2020 were analyzed. 

 

Current state of knowledge

Within 581 articles of PubMED database, 15 substantial articles on advancements of telemedicine in neurosurgery during SARS-CoV2 Pandemic were included in the review. 60% of the articles discussed telemedicine implementation and improvements made, 40% of the articles discussed the legislative changes, telemedicine recommendations and good pratices. Most of the articles noted the significant increase in provision of services using telemedicine and high satisfaction of patients and professionals from the remote visits. However, many challenges of the technology has been encountered including difficulties in conducting proper remote examination, lack of standarized protocols, concerns of the ethical and social matters, such as patient’s confidentiality and privacy concerns, digital illiteracy in patients, and the need for more advanced hardware and more secure software for the provision of high quality services.

 

Conclusions 

Reviewed research presents significant improvements in introduction of telemedicine in neurosurgical field in times of COVID Pandemic, however due to many multidisciplinary concerns regarding telemedicine implementation, face-to-face examination and communication still should take priority over the telemedicine interventions in the non-emergency future.  

 


Keywords


Telemedicine; telehealth; neurosurgery; SARS-CoV2

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References


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