February 9, 2022

Satisfaction and Effectiveness of Tele-Medicine in Follow-Up of People with Epilepsy in a Resource-Poor Setting During COVID-19

Abstract found in PubMed and originally published in Epilepsy & Behavior

Background: Effectiveness of different tele-medicine strategies varies in different medical conditions. Use of basic tele-medicine strategy like mobile health (m-health) can be an effective option in different medical conditions in a resource-poor setting.

Aims: To study effectiveness and satisfaction of tele-medicine among persons with epilepsy (PWE) in a developing nation during COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods: Persons with epilepsy aged 18 years or more who have attended epilepsy clinic at least once physically and were asked for regular follow-up were included. A cross-sectional telephonic survey was conducted to assess effectiveness of tele-medicine over past 1 year. Satisfaction was assessed by tele-medicine satisfaction questionnaire.

Result: 31.9% of PWE have used tele-medicine facility in last 1 year and 58.2% were unaware of the availability of such a facility. Among those who utilized tele-medicine, 95.3% were able to explain their concerns satisfactorily during tele-consultation and change in prescription was done in 42.8%. None experienced any new adverse event. Overall, more than 95% were satisfied with tele-consultation and more than 80% wanted to use it again.

Conclusion: Even basic tele-medicine strategies can be a very effective and satisfactory mode of follow-up for people with epilepsy in resource-poor settings. Steps should be undertaken to make people aware of the availability of such a facility.