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Tag: Telemedicine

Research Proposal

Telemedicine: Bridging the Gap Between Healthcare Services and Rural Communities


Every summer break, I travel to the outskirts of Singamaneni Palli, where I am greeted by my grandmother with big hugs and warm smiles. Singamaneni Palli appears to outsiders as a typical village, but in reality it has been stuck in a vicious cycle of poverty for decades. One of the major problems facing the village is that of healthcare. With no hospital in the village, access to medical care in emergency situations is nearly impossible. The nearest hospital is more than 50 km away in a neighboring village, but is often overcrowded with patients desperate for medical care and not enough doctors or resources to provide it.

The issue of healthcare remains a long-standing problem in many areas of the world. While efforts have been made to improve access to and affordability of healthcare services, there are still many communities, such my grandmother’s village, where progress is difficult to attain due to various social, economic and political circumstances. However, the development of Telemedicine has begun to revolutionize the standard of care patients are receiving in the underdeveloped and underserved communities. Telemedicine allows healthcare providers to evaluate, diagnose and treat patients using modern technology and telecommunications. The evolving field allows virtual communication between the patient and medical provider, thereby removing distance barriers and improving access to medical services that would otherwise not be available in remote, rural communities.

The purpose of this study is to examine the extent to which Telemedicine has improved access to healthcare in rural and underdeveloped areas, taking into consideration the advantages and disadvantages of the system. My analysis will then allow me to draw broader conclusions about how the integration of technology impacts underserved communities in both positive and negative ways. Based on these goals, the question I ultimately to address is the following: To what extent has Telemedicine revolutionized the standard of care that people in rural and underdeveloped communities receive?  

General Outline

Paragraph 1: Introduction to Telemedicine

In this paragraph, I will start with an introduction to Telemedicine. I will discuss the history of the system, including where it started and how it has evolved over time. I will provide a formal definition of the word and provide a few examples of how it has been used in the past. I will end this paragraph with the purpose of my study and my thesis statement.

Paragraph 2: Case Studies

In this paragraph, I will use real-life examples to describe how Telemedicine has been implemented in rural/underdeveloped communities around the world.

Paragraph 3: Advantages of the System

In this paragraph, I will analyze the advantages of the system based on the case studies discussed in Paragraph 2, as well as the information I obtain from my other sources.

Paragraph 4: Disadvantages of the System

In this paragraph, I will analyze the disadvantages of the system based on the case studies discussed in Paragraph 2, as well as the information I obtain from my other sources.

Paragraph 5: Analysis of the Effectiveness of the System

Based on my analysis of the advantages and disadvantages of the system, I will draw conclusions regarding the effectiveness of the system in serving its ultimate purpose. I will weigh both the benefits and drawbacks, with support from my sources, in order to take a stance on the topic.

Paragraph 6: Broader Analysis of Integration of Technology in Underdeveloped Areas

Using my research on how Telemedicine has shaped the care people in rural and underdeveloped areas receive, I will make broader claims about how technology (in a general sense) has an impact on these communities.

Paragraph 7: The Future of Telemedicine/Access to Medical Care in Rural Areas & Conclusion

With an increased understanding of how technology impacts underdeveloped communities through my own research, I will draw conclusions about what this means for the future of medical care in underdeveloped areas. I ultimately hope to tie all aspects of my paper together to address the “Now What?” question in an effort to gain an understanding of how this topic is both a relevant and pressing issue in today’s digital era. 

Possible Sources

Bashshur, Rashid et al. Telemedicine. C.C. Thomas, 1997.

Bauer J.C. and Ringel M.A. Telemedicine and the Reinvention of Healthcare. McGraw-Hill, New York, 1999.

Darkins A.W. and Cary M.A. Telemedicine and Telehealth: Principles, Policies, Performance, and Pitfalls. Springer, London, 2000.  

Geyman, John P et al. Textbook Of Rural Medicine. Mcgraw-Hill, 2001.

Rhoads, CJ. Telehealth In Rural Hospitals: Lessons Learned From Pennsylvania. CRC, 2015.

Wachter, Robert M. The Digital Doctor: Hope, Hype, and Harm at the Dawn of Medicine’s Computer Age. 2015.

World Health Organization. Telemedicine: Opportunities And Developments In Member States. World Health Organization, Geneva, 2010. http://www.who.int/goe/publications/goe_telemedicine_2010.pdf


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