Study: Telemedicine Consults Reduce Costs for Pediatric Rural Patients | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

Study: Telemedicine Consults Reduce Costs for Pediatric Rural Patients

May 22, 2015
by Gabriel Perna
| Reprints
Telemedicine could be an effective cost-savings tool in bringing care to rural pediatric patients, according to the findings of a study from the University of California - Davis Health System. 
Researchers at UC Davis found that telemedicine more than paid for itself compared to telephone consults, with an average saved of $4,662 per use. They looked at the "Pediatric Critical Care Telemedicine Program" at the health system, from 2003 to 2009. 
The researchers compared cost of implementing and maintaining the telemedicine program to the transfer logs at the eight hospitals and emergency department visits. They looked at five symptoms: asthma, bronchiolitis, dehydration, fever and pneumonia, since they seem to be the ones that can be treated at rural hospitals via telemedicine.
They found that compared to the telephone, telemedicine helped reduce transfers between hospitals, which costs a significant amount. The overall difference in cost was 31 percent, the researchers found.
"Our previous work showed that telemedicine was good for kids, families and providers, but we didn't really address the cost issue," James Marcin, M.D., UC Davis interim head of pediatric critical care medicine, said in a statement. "Now we know, not only does it improve quality, safety and satisfaction, but it also saves money."

Get the latest information on Health IT and attend other valuable sessions at this two-day Summit providing healthcare leaders with educational content, insightful debate and dialogue on the future of healthcare and technology.

Learn More



Boston Children's Accelerates Data-Driven Approach to Clinical Research

In an effort to bring a more data-driven approach to clinical research, Boston Children’s Hospital has joined the TriNetX global health research network.

Paper Records, Films Most Common Type of Healthcare Data Breach, Study Finds

Despite the high level of hospital adoption of electronic health records and federal incentives to do so, paper and films were the most frequent location of breached data in hospitals, according to a recent study.

AHA Appoints Senior Advisor for Cybersecurity and Risk

The American Hospital Association (AHA) has announced that John Riggi has joined the association as senior advisor for cybersecurity and risk.

Report: Healthcare Accounted for 45% of All Ransomware Attacks in 2017

Healthcare fell victim to more ransomware attacks than any other industry in 2017, according to a new report from global cybersecurity insurance company Beazley.

Study: Use of EHRs Does Not Reduce Administrative Costs

A recent study by Duke University and Harvard Business School researchers found that costs for processing a single bill ranged from $20 for a primary care visit to $215 for an inpatient surgical procedure, or up to 25 percent of revenue.

Kibbe to Step Down as CEO of DirectTrust

David Kibbe, M.D., M.B.A., announced he would step down as president and CEO of DirectTrust at the end of the year.