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In Recenti progressi in medicina

The CoViD-19 pandemic has provided the opportunity for the health care's digital revolution with the unprecedented accelerated expansion of telehealth, telemedicine and other digital health tools. Several tools have been developed and launched at national and international level to face the emergency, including tools to perform online triage, symptoms checking, video visits and remote monitoring, and to conduct local and national epidemiological surveillance studies. Artificial intelligence-based tools have also been developed to diagnose cases of CoViD-19 or to identify patients at risk. Most of these technologies have been endorsed by medical societies such as the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Family Physicians which launched specific guidelines about their use. The growth in telemedicine services and in digital health technologies could not have occurred without important telehealth regulatory changes that have occurred in some countries aimed at promoting their use to face the CoViD-19 emergency, such as the deregulation of the use of video conferencing and video chat systems to carry out video visits, and the payment parity between telehealth and in clinic care. In order to decide whether to continue using these tools even after the pandemic is over, it could be useful to perform validation and efficacy studies of these tools to study their implications on the doctor-patient relationship, to understand if the new features can be integrated with the other technological tools already in use, and if they can improve clinical practice and quality of care.

Santoro Eugenio