The evolving face of telemedicine amp;amp; e-health: opening doors and closing gaps in e-health services opportunities amp;amp; challenges
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Despite the growing number of e-health Web sites that are dedicated to health education and information therapy, healthcare provider organizations have been slow in embarking on sign e-commerce ventures to improve the delivery of healthcare services to patients and consumers in geographically dispersed communities. More specifically, hospitals and health provider organizations tend to use static Web sites that supply information, but have not made major investments in interactive technologies to engage patients and healthcare consumers more actively. In this paper, we survey a number of key participants in the e-health marketplace and the technologies that these players have employed to date. Not surprisingly, we found that opportunities abound to change the face of telemedicine and e-health in terms of improving efficiencies, developing new markets, reducing costs, and enhancing the quality and value of health services delivery. Evidently, today’s Internet savvy consumers have become more informed as well as more demanding than ever and the healthcare industry must respond in kind. We therefore conclude that the healthcare industry faces sign challenges in closing the gaps of e-health services delivery to meet the desires and needs of a growing population of sophisticated healthcare consumers.
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