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Evolving techniques in text-based medical consultation: Physicians' long-term experiences at an Ask the doctor service
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Family Medicine.
2017 (English)In: International Journal of Medical Informatics, ISSN 1386-5056, E-ISSN 1872-8243, Vol. 105, p. 83-88Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Introduction: Both the demands and the options for patients to communicate with health care providers utilizing eHealth solutions are increasing. Some patients, or relatives to patients, want to consult another health care provider than the regular one, merely in text.

Objective: To improve text-based medical consultation by learning from long-term experiences.

Materials and methods: Physicians with comprehensive experience of answering free-text medical inquiries at an official health portal in Sweden were interviewed. The interviews were analyzed using a grounded theory approach.

Results: Over time, the interviewed physicians developed strategies on how to formulate the answer to a medical inquiry from a previously unknown inquirer. The answering physicians experienced their primary role as providers of medical information and as mediators between an inquirer and the regular health care provider. Many of the answering physicians experienced a personal development with improved communication skills, also in face-to-face meetings with patients.

Conclusion: Text-based medical consultation is part of an expanding area in eHealth. The development of strategies, guidelines, ethical considerations as well as educational efforts are needed to optimize the skills of asynchronous text-based health consultation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
ELSEVIER IRELAND LTD , 2017. Vol. 105, p. 83-88
Keywords [en]
e-Health, Remote consultation, Consumer health information, Health information needs, Information and communication techniques, Telehealth
National Category
Health Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-139622DOI: 10.1016/j.ijmedinf.2017.05.013ISI: 000407778900009PubMedID: 28750914OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-139622DiVA, id: diva2:1146700
Available from: 2017-10-03 Created: 2017-10-03 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved

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Umefjord, Göran

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf