Unclear if ICU telemedicine can save hospitals money
Remote monitoring of intensive care patients—a strategy to maximize scarce medical expertise—can cost hospitals anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000 per bed in the first year of operation, according to a new study. Whether this investment pays off in the long run by improving ICU patients' care and saving money, "we don't know," said Dr. Gaurav Kumar, a fellow at the University of Iowa and the lead author of the study published in the journal Chest. Kumar's review of past research on the costs and benefits of telemedicine in the ICU found a range of estimates of the technology's economic impact—from increasing hospital profits to adding a financial burden.
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