Over the years, this blog has commented many times on the ways that a remote, telehealth initiative could connect doctors with patients in a meaningful way. This has implications for patients with various conditions, especially if they live in inaccessible places, and a newly published study specifically refers to ADHD care possibilities for children. Implementing remote care programs could be daunting at first, but the benefits may make them ultimately rewarding.
This study appeared in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. It concerns an experimental initiative called the Children's ADHD Telemental Health Treatment Study, or CATTS, which compared different kinds of consultation models with a randomized selection of more than 220 children from seven different communities, all of whom were diagnosed with ADHD.
Some were treated through remote telehealth sessions, while others saw primary care physicians with the addition of a telepsychiatry consultation. The results showed that the telehealth group of patients showed "significantly more" improvements than the control group, although the latter did improve as well.
As FierceHealthIT reported, the study's lead author Dr. Kathleen Myers spoke to Medscape Medical News about the results, explaining why telehealth solutions are a possible aid in addressing child ADHD concerns.
"Telehealth services bring new resources to treat major psychiatric disorders, such as ADHD in children," she said. "It improves collaboration with primary care physicians, and, importantly, it is a way to redistribute the specialty mental health work force."
Before an ambitious IT-centered treatment program takes place, a care provider may need to look at existing attitudes towards data security and other measures to know for sure how a launch should play out. A long term care consultant could be particularly useful in working with telehealth-ready patient populations in assisted living or another such facility.