Scope of telemedicine in neonatology


Makkar A, Siatkowski RM, Szyld E, Ganguly A, Sekar K.Zhongguo Dang Dai Er Ke Za Zhi. 2020 May;22(5):396-408.PMID: 32434631 Free article.



There is a widespread shortage of physicians worldwide, especially in rural areas. This shortage is more prevalent when it comes to subspecialty care, even in developed countries. One way to provide access to specialty care is using technology via telemedicine. Telemedicine has evolved over the last two decades, and its use is becoming widespread in developed countries. However, its use in the neonatal population is still limited and practiced only in some centers. It is now apparent that telemedicine can be successfully used in the neonatal population for screening premature infants for retinopathy of prematurity, congenital heart disease, bedside clinical rounds, neonatal resuscitation with the support of a tertiary care hospital, and family support. This avoids unnecessary transfer and appears to provide the same quality of care that the baby would have received at the tertiary care facility. This approach also improves family satisfaction, as the baby and the mother are kept together, and reduces the cost of care. This review focuses on the use of telemedicine in neonatal care, concentrating on the main areas where telemedicine has been shown to be successful and effective, including the status of telemedicine in China.