Remote clinics in gastroenterology: a literature review of telephone and video consultations in adult and paediatric services

Michelle Brooks*, Audrey Cund

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

Background
Remote clinics, where patients attend appointments over telephone or video calls, are increasingly replacing traditional in-person consultations. In the UK, gastroenterology clinics have generally occurred in hospital outpatient departments, and uptake of remote clinics had been slow, before accelerating in the COVID-19 pandemic.

Aims
This literature review aimed to assess the use, advantages and disadvantages of remote clinics in adult and paediatric gastroenterology.

Methods
A literature search was carried out for articles in English published since 2000.

Findings
Four articles were identified, two on adult and two on paediatric gastroenterology services. Benefits highlighted included high patient satisfaction with and preference for remote clinics, owing to reduced travel time and cost. Services reported reduced nonattendance rates compared with in-person clinics. Authors and patients cautioned that remote clinics should not entirely replace face-to-face contact, which has advantages for visual assessment and building clinician–patient relationships.

Conclusions
Remote clinics are effective for gastroenterology services. Further research is recommended to capture the qualitative experience of the patients, families and nurses involved in these remote clinics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22-27
Number of pages6
JournalGastrointestinal Nursing
Volume18
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Nov 2020

Keywords

  • attendance rates
  • e-health technology
  • patient satisfaction
  • telehealth consultation
  • virtual appointment

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