A telemedicine model for emergency care in a short-term correctional facility

D. G. Ellis, J. Mayrose, D. V. Jehle, R. M. Moscati, G. J. Pierluisi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


The primary objectives of this research were to determine the effectiveness of a personal computer-based telemedicine system for semi- and nonurgent complaints at a short-term correctional facility and to evaluate the system as a potential model for providing emergency care to remote locations. We performed a retrospective review of medical records of patients referred to the emergency department in person or via telemedicine during a 12-month period. The data included system utilization, chief complaints, physical examination, diagnostic testing, disposition, and outcomes in patients evaluated via telemedicine. Also identified were nursing diagnostic and procedure skills associated with successful evaluation via telemedicine. A total of 530 emergency care records were reviewed with 126 telemedicine consultations performed. Eighty-one of 126 (64%) telemedicine patients remained at the facility following consultation with the remaining 45 (36%) being transported to the emergency department. Rates of return to the emergency department within 7 days following consultation were comparable, patient acceptance and satisfaction was high, and there were no untoward outcomes in the group. Average total time of telemedicine consultation was 30 minutes versus a 2-hour and 45-minutes turnaround time for an emergency department evaluation. A variety of emergency complaints were managed effectively using relatively low-cost computer-based telemedicine technology, thereby, eliminating the need for transportation of the patient to the emergency department. This system provides an emergency physician-nurse model for conduction limited emergency care in remote settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)87-92
Number of pages6
JournalTelemedicine and e-Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management


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