Title: Virtual doctor consultation, potential to revolutionise healthcare access in resource poor settings: opportunities and challenges

Authors: Gopireddy Murali Mohan Reddy; Srinivas Gunda; Prasad Kompalli; Priyanka Gollapalli; Anjana Sevagamoorthy

Addresses: Evidencian Research Associates, 401, Rama Villas, RK Heights, 1st cross, Somasandrapalya, HSR layout, Sector-2, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560102, Bangalore, India ' Mfine, Novocura Tech Health Services, #1245, 22nd main road, 13th cross road, 1st Sector, HSR Layout, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560102, Bangalore, India ' Mfine, Novocura Tech Health Services, #1245, 22nd main road, 13th cross road, 1st Sector, HSR Layout, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560102, Bangalore, India ' Evidencian Research Associates, 401, Rama Villas, RK Heights, 1st cross, Somasandrapalya, HSR layout, Sector-2, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560102, Bangalore, India ' Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA

Abstract: Access to quality healthcare still remains a distant dream for significant proportion of global population. Direct virtual doctor consultation is emerging as potential solution to improve healthcare access. The current review was conducted to summarise the nature and impact of various virtual healthcare models reported in peer-reviewed scientific journals. We have also reviewed user and provider perspectives and attempted to present a critical analytical input to relevant stakeholders. The current study was a qualitative review of published studies retrieved from PubMED, Embase, Cochrane, and CINHAL plus. Virtual doctor consultation is not a new phenomenon and has been in practice for about the last few decades. Massive increase in the scale of adaptation in recent times makes it more palpable and is responsible for spurious perception of it as a recent phenomenon. Current technological advancements and better quality of data transfer makes it more effective and safer than ever before.

Keywords: virtual doctor consultation; e-health; e-consultation; digital health; telemedicine; tele-health; m-health.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEH.2021.117126

International Journal of Electronic Healthcare, 2021 Vol.11 No.3, pp.271 - 287

Received: 11 May 2020
Accepted: 13 Nov 2020

Published online: 10 Aug 2021 *

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