UP-139 Practical Telemedicine and Digital Health for Learners-A New Curriculum or a Necessity?
Thursday June 27, 2019 from

O. Emmanuel Abara, Canada


Division of Clinical Sciences

Northern Ontario School of Medicine


Practical telemedicine and digital health for learners: A new curriculum or a necessity?

O. Emmanuel Abara1, Sebastian Diebel1, Ndidi O Abara2.

1Division of Clinical Sciences,Surgery.Urology, Northern Ontario School of Medicine, Sudbury/Thunder Bay, ON, Canada; 2Department of Family Practice, Yuma Regional Medical Centre, Yuma, AZ, United States

Ontario Telemedicine Network (OTN) now OntarioHealth. Staff ,Richmond Hill Urology Practice and Prostate Institute RHUPPI.

Introduction: We are in an age where technology is driving the way we live, learn and do business. Digital health, Telemedicine, Artificial Intelligence are expected to influence the way health care is delivered. The uptake of these technologies varies amongst specialties and health care professionals. Since we incorporated Telemedicine in our Office Urology Practice in 2006, we have received requests from learners in various Universities and colleges to learn about new technologies in health care. This report is the outcome of our experience and those of the learners.

Method: Following requests from learners at various Universities and Colleges to learn about new technologies in health care, a curriculum was developed to teach basic practical Telemedicine and Digital Health Concepts in 4-hour periods weekly for 3 weeks. Approved consent and learning contract were obtained from the learners, A learning curriculum was developed based on their learning needs and time resources. All aspects of Telemedicine in Office urology practice were taught. There were 15 learners at various stages of their undergraduate, nursing or medical education.

Results: In 12 hours over 3 weeks, learners gained knowledge, attitude and skill in Telemedicine and digital health for future career success. Learners were engaged in designing the curriculum through their learning contracts. Excellent time management was key to keeping the learners keen.  Feedback from 12 of the 15 learners we reached at this time suggest this experience had a positive impact in their learning and practice as they progressed in their chosen fields in health care.

Conclusion: Engaging learners early in their training on the application of Telemedicine, digital health and various upcoming technologies seem appropriate. This will help to grow and increase the uptake of technology in health care. Now that COVID-19 seem to have made Telemedicine/Telehealth to go ‘viral’ the need exists for well structured design, implementation and evaluation of a curriculum for health care learners.

Lectures by O. Emmanuel Abara

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