Online Journal of Public Health Informatics
Volume 6, Issue 2
Article number e185
The objective of this study was to assess the use of telemedicine services at community health centers. A national survey was distributed to all federally qualified health centers to gather data on their use of health information technology, including telemedicine services. Over a third of responding health centers (37%) provided some type of telemedicine service while 63% provided no telemedicine services. A further analysis that employed ANOVA and chi-square tests to assess differences by the provision of telemedicine services (provided no telemedicine services, provided one telemedicine service, and provided two or more telemedicine services) found that the groups differed by Meaningful Use compliance, location, percentage of elderly patients, mid-level provider, medical, and mental health staffing ratios, the percentage of patients with diabetes with good control, and state and local funds per patient and per uninsured patient. This article presents the first national estimate of the use of telemedicine services at community health centers. Further study is needed to determine how to address factors, such as reimbursement and provider shortages, that may serve as obstacles to further expansion of telemedicine services use by community health centers.
Shin, P., Sharac, J., Jacobs, F. (2014). Provision of telemedicine services by community health centers: An analysis of the readiness for HIT survey results. Online Journal of Public Health Informatics, 6(2): e185.