With the undeniable growth of telemedicine the American Medical Association has decided to meet this weekend and next week to decide whether or not to adopt guidelines that focus on the ethics of telemedicine, Forbes.com reported this week.
At the past two meetings for AMA delegates, the topic of telemedicine was tabled. Even now, it is not 100% that guidelines will be implemented, but this is a step in the right direction of the AMA embracing this seemingly inevitable way of practicing healthcare.
The AMA has been working on ways to advise physicians on the best way to deal with and incorporate telemedicine into their practice while maintaining the required ethics of a doctor patient relationship, so it is possible that a vote of delegates could come through next week.
As reported by Forbes.com, “Although physicians’ fundamental ethical responsibilities do not change, the continuum of possible patient-physician interactions in telehealth/telemedicine give rise to differing levels of accountability for physicians,” the AMA’s Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs wrote in a report that will be taken up by delegates.
With so many people traveling domestically and internationally for healthcare, incorporating telehealth guidelines will only help to ensure better quality when it comes to continuum of care.
“The biggest expansion in telemedicine will be used in medical tourism to give second opinions and allow international patients to have access to top doctors from around the world, at the click of their finger. Many telemedicine companies are now repositioning themselves and are seeing that most of their growth in revenue will come from the international market in the future,” said Jonathan Edelheit, CEO, Medical Tourism Association®.