Launching a video consultation service for child psychiatry in Pohjois-Savo region: opinions and experiences of the trained target groups
Video conferencing (VC) and other telemedicine tools may help to improve the quality and availability of care in remote, sparsely populated areas. The transnational “eHealth Services for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (eCAP), 2015-2018” project aims at developing new solutions for mental health care for children and adolescents in remote communities. In Finland, the Department of Child Psychiatry at Kuopio University Hospital (KUH) launched in early 2017 an online booking system and a browser-based VC solution to support the primary healthcare and other professionals working with children in Pohjois-Savo region by facilitating video-based consultations, supervision and support for treatment. Over 200 professionals in the region were trained to use the service.
For evaluating the provided training and gaining insight for the revealed non-use of the service, an online survey was administered to the trained persons in December 2017-January 2018. The respondents (n=89, response rate 45 %) demonstrated high satisfaction with the provided training, yet majority of them had not used the service and could not assess its functionality. They embraced the idea of video consultations, but there had been no need for that in practice yet, or more training or reminding about the service was desired. Some had faced technical problems preventing them from using the service. However, nearly 90 % of the respondents said that they will or might use the service in the future – often conditionally, “if there will be a need”.
The results clearly demonstrate the importance of customer-orientation, training, constant promotion and reinforcement when introducing new telemedicine services.
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