Use Case on Telemedicine - Mexico

What can telemedicine achieve around the World?

The majority of telemedicine services, most of which focus on diagnosis and clinical management, are routinely offered in industrialized regions including but not limited to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Scandinavia, North America, and Australia. In addition, biometric measuring devices such as equipment monitoring heart rate, blood pressure, and blood glucose levels are increasingly used to remotely monitor and manage patients with acute and chronic illnesses. Some predict that telemedicine will profoundly transform the delivery of health services in the industrialized world by migrating health care delivery away from hospitals and clinics into homes.

In low-income countries and in regions with limited infrastructure, telemedicine applications are primarily used to link healthcare providers with specialists, referral hospitals, and tertiary care centers.

Breast cancer screening for rural Mexican residents

In 2006 breast cancer became the leading cause of death in Mexican women between the ages of fifty to sixty-nine. The Opportune Breast Cancer Screening and Diagnosis Program (OBCSDP) is meant to transcend economic and personnel barriers through the innovative deployment of ICTs. Aimed to reduce the breast cancer mortality rate in women between the ages of fifty to sixty-nine, the program will increase the national screening rates from 7.2% in 2007 to 21.6% by 2012.

The telemedicine network had the goal to screen 1.3 million women in the 30-month period between May 2010 and December 2012. With over 34 million Mexican pesos (approximately US$ 2.8 million) of seed funding from the federal and state governments and not-for-profit groups, 30 screening sites in 11 states were linked by the Internet to two interpretation centers, where results of the screenings could be viewed by radiologists. (In 2012, eight more interpretation sites will be opened, and the program’s operational costs will become self-sustaining.)

This collaboration led to the program overcoming a shortage of radiologists to improve equity of access in preventative breast cancer screening and diagnosis for rural and remote residents in over five states in Mexico.

( The use case is done by WHO )