The Benefits of Telehealth in Rural Populations Essay

2131 Words 9 Pages
Benefits of Telehealth in Rural Populations
Kansas is considered a rural state in the United States. Merriam-Webster (2012) defines rural theoretically as “open land” or “relating to the country, country people or life, or agriculture”. The U.S. Census Bureau considers rural to be “open country and settlements with fewer than 2,500 residents” (Cromartie, 2007). Nearly 17% of the U.S. population lives in rural areas, which is about 80% of all U.S. territory (Cromartie, 2009). What this means that there is more land mass compared to the people inhabiting the land; rural communities have fewer people living in larger, more remote areas. Individuals living in rural communities have different cultures and experiences than those living in
…show more content…
104). Efforts to bridge the gap in healthcare for this underserved population led researchers to monitor trends to obtain understanding of the disparities between urban and rural communities and investigated possible solutions to the problems (Graves, 2010). With this research, the focus was placed on computers and technology-based delivery methods for a solution, thus the emergence of telemedicine, or telehealth. Telehealth is described as the “use of videoconferencing and/or other telecommunication technologies to enable the transmission of diagnostic images, video and/or information between patients and health care providers that are not physically in the same place” (Bushy, 2002, p. 110; Demiris, Doorenbos & Towle, 2009, p. 129). This paper will show that the use of telehealth will benefit individuals living in rural communities by bringing them greater access to healthcare, decreasing costs for seeking healthcare and improving quality of life. A literature search was conducted using the computerized search of nursing literature using the databases CINAHL and ProQuest to identify relevant studies published between 2000 and 2012. The date range was expanded to ensure some articles would have adequate

Related Documents