NLM National Telemedicine Initiative
This Web page presents information about NLM's National Telemedicine Initiative, which was funded in FY 1996 and FY 1997.
Telemedicine is the use of computers, the Internet, and other communication technologies to provide medical care information to patients at a distance.
In October 1996, NLM announced the award of 19 multi-year telemedicine research contracts to serve as models for:
- Evaluating the impact of telemedicine on cost, quality, and access to health care
- Assessing various approaches to ensuring the confidentiality of health data transmitted via electronic networks
- Testing emerging health data standards
The projects developed and evaluated the use of telemedicine in a wide variety of settings including rural, inner-city, and suburban areas. Two additional projects were announced in September 1997. Project summaries.
As appropriate, the projects were to review and apply recommendations from two National Academy of Sciences studies on criteria for evaluation of telemedicine and practices to ensure confidentiality of electronic health data. NLM was the principal funder of these studies, which were:
- Institute of Medicine (1996): Telemedicine: A Guide to Assessing Telecommunications in Health Care
- National Research Council (1997): For the Record: Protecting Electronic Health Information
- Sampler of Web Sites of Telemedicine Projects supported by NLM
- The Virtual Hospital (link no longer works)
- National Laboratory for the Study of Rural Telemedicine (link no longer works)
- NLM Fact Sheets
- National Library of Medicine Telemedicine Activities
- HSRPROJ (Health Services Research Projects in Progress), an NLM database that provides descriptions of ongoing grants and contracts in health services research, including telemedicine
- Press Announcements
- May 1994: Advanced Technology Focus of 12 HPCC Health Care Awards
- October 1996: National Telemedicine Initiative
- National Telemedicine Symposium
- The Office of High Performance Computing and Communications within NLM's Lister Hill National Center for Biomedical Communications sponsored a National Telemedicine Symposium that was held March 13-14, 2001, at the William H. Natcher Conference Center on the NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland. The symposium highlighted the telemedicine research that NLM funded from 1994 to 2000. The purpose of that research was to evaluate the use of communications technologies in the implementation and performance of telemedicine activities, and to examine the impact of telemedicine on medical care in terms of cost, quality, and access. Symposium proceedings, available final reports, and other supporting information are at http://collab.nlm.nih.gov/tutorialspublicationsandmaterials/telesymposiumcd/starthere.html.
- A selection of possible funding resources for telemedicine projects
- Institute of Medicine: The Computer-Based Patient Record: An Essential Technology for Health Care, Revised Edition (1997)
- NLM Current Bibliographies in Medicine: Telemedicine: Past, Present, Future, CBM 95-4. This 1995 retrospective bibliography contains 1,634 citations dated from January 1966 through March 1995.
- NLM's NGI (Next Generation Internet) program funded various organizations to develop innovative uses of NGI capabilities in healthcare applications
- As part of its NGI program, NLM funded a study by the National Academy of Sciences' Computer Science and Telecommunications Board entitled Networking Health: Prescriptions for the Internet