Rapid developments in the fields of computers and communications technologies have enabled information technology to secure a commanding position in all walks of life ranging from financial transactions through entertainment to water supplies. Surprisingly, healthcare systems – a domain of high social relevance, world over can be considered as laggards in adopting information technologies (Braa et al. 1). The prime issues those are challenging healthcare IT are (Hersh, 2273):
Despite these challenges, forward looking and IT savvy clinicians are trying their best to lead the adoption drive in their respective healthcare set ups, the day is not far when IT applications in healthcare will merge into mainstream healthcare delivery systems.
Telemedicine (use of information technologies like internet to deliver healthcare services at a distance) is one applications of HealthIT that has the potential to not only address some of the intransigent healthcare issues but is also promising enough from a business perspective. Telemedicine enables delivery of healthcare services and medical education from one geographical location to another primarily to address challenges like uneven distribution and shortage of infrastructural and human resources.
Tertiary hospitals can set up peripheral hospitals in remote and isolated areas these and these peripheral hospitals can have telemedicine linkages via internet with the tertiary level (referral) hospital primarily to extend the reach of specialized medical services to remote and isolated cases. This type of business concept has been used by a number of healthcare service providers around the globe. Slowly and steadily such services are not only bridging the digital divide but are also acting as pathways for revenue generation.
2. Brown, E.D. "Risks and issues in Cloud Computing." Eric D Brown: Technology, Strategy, People and Projects 2 Feb 2009: n. pag. Web. 4 Nov 2009.