Telemedicine for Care Services
Country of Operation
- HOPE WorldwideNot-for-profit
Target income level
- Bottom 20%
- Lower-middle income (20-40%)
- Middle-income (40-60%)
- Higher middle-income (60-80%)
- High-income (80-100%)
SummaryTelemedicine for HIV/AIDS Care Services is a medical technology communication model that has been initiated and implemented by HOPE Worldwide through Sihanouk Hospital Center of Hope (SHCH) to support and enhance the delivery of HIV/AIDS care services and public health service in rural areas.
In Cambodia, HIV/AIDS has become a public concern and prioritized for care services; new types of atypical HIV/AIDS-related opportunistic infections have emerged. This creates complexity in making a diagnosis, requiring discussion and technical assistance from experts and specialists. The initiation of tele-medicine for health care aims at facilitating and promoting the accurate diagnosis and proper treatment of complex HIV/AIDS related illness through the use of on-air interference as a platform for discussion, experience exchanges and technical medical advice.
Key program components
HOPE Worldwide through its focal staff with expertise in HIV/AIDS care works closely with Institute of Tropical Medicine (Belgium) to implement the Telemedicine for Health Care Services. The Sihanouk Hospital Center of Hope (SHCH) staff are selected to be focal persons who are responsible for on-air discussion. The focal persons are trained on how to use software systems and communicate with remote experts and specialists. A set of telemedicine software is specially designed and installed to facilitate the on-air discussion.
The hospital has established innovative telemedicine projects that link available care at the hospital to remote locations such as Rattanakiri and Preah Vihear. When second opinions are necessary, records are sent to clinicians at the Sihanouk Hospital for review. Some of these records are also passed on to participating physicians at the Massachusetts General Hospital, via Center for Connected Health, in Boston. The resulting discussion allows doctors in Cambodia to learn about and utilize alternative treatment options that are available.
When facing complicated cases, the local technical team members organize a discussion on the management of the cases; however, if the local team members fail to solve the cases, they consult the different international experts and specialists through on-air communication. The focal persons submit the details of the cases such as patient’ profile, medical histories, evolution of possible diagnosis and treatment outcomes and relevant laboratory tests. Besides seeking technical advice, SHCH also hosts some case studies on a website to share lessons leant from the management of complicate cases. In addition, SHCH provides technical support to local health providers, mainly the remote public facilities that apply telemedicine to improve the quality of care services.