Telehealth/continuing education for hypertension adherence (BR)

Not quite what you might think from the FierceHealthIT article, but worth considering. The study of ‘telehealth’ is from a research team from the Federal University of Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil (UFPE) who developed a continuing education program for clinical staff in the Family Health Teams in Pernambuco, and does not involve telehealth monitoring of patients. (Some background: the FHTs were established in 1994 to promote primary care in Brazil. Conventional on-site clinical education is difficult due to the dispersed nature of the care teams–and web connectivity is still an issue.) The CE was delivered to 21 professionals in 11 web conferences followed up with electronic patient evaluation forms. In the monitored patient group (N~500) with hypertension, compliance with antihypertensive drugs, low salt diet, and physical activity was increased moderately. A novel study on the effects of influencing professionals by education delivered online, in developing countries where this is not commonplace. Fortunately available online in full text: A Telehealth Strategy for Increasing Adherence in the Treatment of Hypertension in Primary Care (Telemedicine and e-Health, Mary Ann Liebert Publishing, April 2013)

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