Telemedicine: an ICT based healthcare approach to ensure health service for all

Rasheda Akhtar, Sazzadul Alam, Noor Kutubul Alam Siddiquee


Background: Despite enormous efforts, healthcare service is still a daunting challenge area of Bangladesh healthcare systems. Bangladesh suffers from both a shortage of and geographic mal-distribution of human resource for health, as well as inadequate resources. Considering the challenges, telemedicine can be a blessing especially to the people living in hard-to-reach and rural areas. The current study was conducted on to measure the outcomes of providing telemedicine service at the field level.

Methods: The study was conducted in Nagarkanda Upazilla of Faridpur district. Mixed method approaches including user experience and perception survey, case study and in-depth interview were adopted in order to bring a comprehensive scenario.

Results: Around 50% of the users used to visit telemedicine center frequently. For quality of service provided from telemedicine service point, there were few benchmarks like service provider’s behavior, waiting time, accessibility, distance, cost of treatment, willingness to pay and referral mechanism. Telemedicine service centers were found situated within the reach of people (within 1-2 km of 83.30% km). 97% participants rated service provider’s behavior as good. Cost of treatment including diagnosis, prescription and medication was found within 501-3000 BDT for 60% of participants.

Conclusions: Although the studied telemedicine service was not comprehensive in nature, it still helped to save time, reduce cost and most of all increased access to healthcare services.


Telemedicine, Barriers, Service providers, Treatment cost, Service quality

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