Scopes and challenges of implementing Telemedicine in a developing country like Bangladesh
AuthorFerdous, Abu Mohammed
The concept of telemedicine is not new. Telemedicine is a modern, growing concept in both developed, and developing countries. Information and communication technology (ICT) is playing an important role to improve health care for both individuals and community levels. ICT systems are now being used to deliver healthcare across geographic distance through “Telemedicine”. The purpose of introducing ICT is to provide decentralized health services. Integrating the use of ICT into existing health systems helps to improve health care in many ways although it is quite challenging for a developing country like Bangladesh. The main purpose of this study is to explore the applicability of telemedicine in Bangladesh and to discover scopes and barriers or challenges of its implementation within existing health care service. In this study, a qualitative research method was used. As such, interpretive research approach was employed in order to gain an understanding of underlying reasons and motivations, to provide insights into the setting of a problem, generating ideas and/or hypotheses for later quantitative research and to uncover prevalent trends in thought and opinion. Semi-structured techniques e.g. individual depth interviews or group discussions were applied in this study to find out possible explanations to the research questions considered. Collected data from the fieldwork were analysed using the theories of Information Infrastructure (II) and Actor-Network Theory (ANT). In ICT sector, Bangladesh has many limitations like poor infrastructure (e.g. transportation, electricity supply), inadequate funding, slow internet connectivity, and lack of skilled or trained work force. There exists weak socio-technical network due to lack of internal network, low security, unawareness among citizens, medical practitioners’ non-cooperation or lack of confidence to use new technology and so on. If all of these and imminent challenges could be tackled, several telemedicine services would be implemented effortlessly in Bangladesh. From my fieldwork, several scopes were identified for example, Biometric Identification System, Electronic Health Record (EHR), Hospital Information System (HIS), Laboratory Information System (LIS), Radiology Information System (RIS) and Picture Archiving and Communication Systems (PACS), E-Prescription, Computer-based Physician Order Entry (CPOE) System and Automated pharmacy etc.
PublisherUiT Norges arktiske universitet
UiT The Arctic University of Norway
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