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National Study of Telemedicine Use in US Emergency Departments

This national study is a survey among 453 rural EDs that do not receive telemedicine (TM) and 453 that receive TM, to identify barriers to and applications for TM use. Please contact Dr. Kori Zachrison if you would like additional details.

Kori Sauser Zachrison, MD, MSc (Principal Investigator)
Carlos A. Camargo, Jr., MD, DrPH (Co-Investigator)
Emily M. Hayden, MD (Co-Investigator)
Krislyn M. Boggs, MPH (Project Coordinator)

Funding Source:
Funded by a grant from the Emergency Medicine Foundation to MGH (Kori Zachrison, PI). The Emergency Medicine Foundation has no role in the conduct of the study nor collection, management, or analysis of data.


  • Aim 1: To characterize implementation of TM in rural EDs
  • Aim 2: To describe the utilization of TM for patient transfer coordination
  • Aim 3:To determine whether policy differences or certification requirements have contributed to differential update of TM for stroke versus PEM.

Resource availability in US EDs varies substantially, with major disparities in access. Growing regionalization has contributed to decreased consultant availability in many smaller or rural EDs. TM could mitigate this by enabling these EDs to connect with expertise when needed.

TM is feasible and effective for improving clinical care in EDs. TM may also enable fewer patient transfers and improved coordination of care during transfer. The value of TM has been well established in stroke care delivery, i.e., telestroke. In contrast, TM in pediatric emergency medicine remains underutilized. The role for TM and the extent of update for these applications is unclear.

Design: This study will investigate barriers to telemedicine use among 453 rural EDs that report that do not receive telemedicine. Among 453 additional EDs that do receive telemedicine, we will investigate the utilization of telemedicine for transfer coordination, stroke, and pediatrics. A survey collecting this information, as well as other information about ED charactics will be mailed to each ED.

Data on whether or not each ED uses telemedicine was collected on the 2016 National ED Inventory survey.

Study Period: 12 months; starting approximately July 1, 2017 and ending approximately June 30, 2018.


©2017 EMNet Last Updated:02/26/18 kb