Advancements in technology and broadband have revolutionized the current practice of medicine. The field of pediatric cardiology is no exception given the need for prompt diagnosis and reliance on cardiac imaging to identify infants and children with potentially life-threatening cardiovascular disease. As the relationship between telemedicine and pediatric cardiology has advanced, it has created a need to develop a broad, comprehensive document reviewing all the various aspects of telemedicine in pediatric cardiology. For more than a decade, a significant body of literature has been published describing individual experiences and practices, yet there remains no comprehensive statement or document summarizing this rapidly advancing field. In an effort to describe the collective experience and to provide structure and guidance for pediatric cardiology practitioners and healthcare providers, we have developed a scientific statement on the use of telemedicine in pediatric cardiology. Specific areas explored in this document include both neonatal and fetal teleechocardiography, implications for training community sonographers, pulse oximetry programs, qualitative improvement and appropriate use criteria initiatives, and remote electrophysiological monitoring. This document also includes teleconsultation and teleausculation, direct-to-consumer and home monitoring programs, and a look into the use of telemedicine and pediatric cardiology in the intensive care setting. Furthermore, a detailed review of the legislative, public policy, and legal aspects of telemedicine is provided, along with financial and reimbursement information. Several terms are used in the literature interchangeably; a brief explanation is provided to help readers of this document. The term telehealth is defined as the use of technology to bridge distances in any aspect of medicine; telemedicine is the specific application of technology to conduct clinical medicine at a distance. The term telecardiology is defined as the broad application of telemedicine in the field of cardiology specifically, and tele-echocardiography is the most common application used within this field.
- AHA Scientific Statements
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)