Don't have a radiologist available to read a patient's latest diagnostic scans? Not a problem. Thanks to the availability of telemedicine, any number of specialists are as close as the nearest laptop computer with a video connection. Telemedicine may be as simple as two health professionals discussing a case over the phone or as sophisticated as using satellite technology and videoconferencing equipment to conduct a real-time consultation between providers halfway around the world from each other. Such use of telemedicine has expanded beyond routine consultations to remote examinations and even some medical procedures. These services, whether in-house or provided by a commercial provider, are especially valuable in rural and other isolated areas or where shortages of critical medical specialties offer little choice.
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