Researchers urgently call for global telehealth guidelines to support AHPs

Researchers urgently call for global telehealth guidelines to support AHPs

Staffordshire University health professionals claim there is an immediate requirement for worldwide telehealth standards for allied health professionals (AHPs) in a bid to enhance remote patient care.

The COVID-19 pandemic saw an unprecedented expansion of telehealth with a shift to remote patient assessments throughout the allied health occupations that includes prosthetics and orthotists, physiotherapy, podiatry, orthoptists, occupational therapists, dieticians and osteopathy.

Robust guidelines for clinicians ought to be made offered on a global scale, so that AHPs know how to appropriately perform remote assessments and avoid client damage, the university encourages.

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Additionally, concerns have actually been raised about the threat of client harm resulting from the lack of diagnostic and healing quality of services delivered through telehealth, as this can lead to life-threatening and extremely contagious conditions being missed.

” Our work highlights that future research and collaborative work throughout AHP groups and the worlds leading health institutions are required to establish common standards which will improve AHP telehealth services. This will be an initial step to develop worldwide telehealth guidelines that can be adjusted to local contexts with a view to improve quality of AHP service arrangement throughout the world.”

Associate Professors Dr Aoife Healy and Dr Nicola Eddison of CBRT included: “Robust assistance must be readily available to help clinicians by providing clear instructions on how to offer remote consultations, which would likewise assist them restrict ineffective and unsuitable interventions, and most notably, harm to clients.

The study exposed that many telehealth standards were developed to quickly react to the need for remote client consultations during the Covid-19 pandemic and suggests that available guidelines must be reviewed to ensure they fulfill the long-term needs of patient consultations.

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” Although the pandemic has actually accelerated the transition to technology-mediated care, concerns and constraints connected to remote consultations and the unexpected threats, mistakes and harm that can happen to clients throughout and/or as an outcome of remote consultations are still present.”

Current research study from the University of Lincoln, Lincolnshire County Council and Serco into how assistive technology might help individuals recuperating from medical conditions live separately in your home has discovered that the intro of telehealth could show to be a health and social care game-changer.


While telehealth can be thought about a efficient and safe method to deliver assessments, in practice, there are barriers which can cause unexpected consequences, the university underlines. These consist of technological restrictions such as insufficient web bandwidth, lack of abilities amongst users, patient privacy, personal privacy as well as information security problems.

Staffordshire University researchers are likewise teaming up with worldwide NGOs on the advancement of telehealth alternatives for the provision of assistive technology.

However, a brand-new study published in BMJ Open, which takes a look at present guidelines for the 14 AHPs in the UK, exposes a clear requirement to solve the disparities in the level of assistance for remote assessments in between professions.

In addition, it recommends that the participation of a multidisciplinary group and brand-new roles– such as telehealth service planner and an AHP digital leader– in the shipment of telehealth would be handy to promote cooperative telehealth activities and relationships across the AHP locations.

Professor Nachi Chockalingam, Director of the Centre for Biomechanics and Rehabilitation Technologies (CBRT) at Staffordshire University, described: “Good client fulfillment, greater accessibility, convenience, and lowered travel and wait times are a few of the elements that have actually resulted in increased telehealth usage and acceptability.

The research study even more advises that as making use of telehealth visits is often left down to clinical judgement, choice aids specific for possible scientific situations would be beneficial accessories to the AHPs decision-making procedure and would help AHPs use telehealth just to those clients for whom it is suitable.

According to the research, some of the advantages of telehealth implementation for the NHS might include reduced patient waiting times, improved medication evaluations, a decrease in unnecessary medical visits, and improved patient discharge support.

Really few standards were specifically developed for specific clinical populations, which acknowledged that telehealth consultations require to be adapted to fulfill private requirements. It was also discovered that many standards were particularly designed for physical therapists, physio therapists and speech and language therapists, leaving the other AHP groups with very few or inadequate guidelines.