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Telemed Rep ; 2(1): 88-96, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1901063


Background: Teleneurology consultations can be highly advantageous since neurological diseases and disabilities often limit patient's access to health care, particularly in a setting where they need to travel long distances for specialty consults. Patient satisfaction is an important outcome assessing success of a telemedicine program. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted to determine satisfaction and perception of patients toward an audio call based teleneurology follow-up initiated during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. Primary outcomes were satisfaction to tele-consult, and proportion of patients preferring telemedicine for future follow-up. Results: A total of 261 patients who received tele-consult were enrolled. Satisfaction was highest for domain technological quality, followed by patient-physician dialogue (PPD) and least to quality of care (QoC). Median (interquartile range) patient satisfaction on a 5-point Likert scale was 4 (3-5). Eighty-five (32.6%; 95% confidence interval 26.9-38.6%) patients preferred telemedicine for future follow-up. Higher overall satisfaction was associated with health condition being stable/better, change in treatment advised on tele-consult, diagnosis not requiring follow-up examination, higher scores on domains QoC and PPD (p < 0.05). Future preference for telemedicine was associated with patient him-/herself consulting with doctor, less duration of follow-up, higher overall satisfaction, and higher scores on domain QoC (p < 0.05). On thematic analysis, telemedicine was found convenient, reduced expenditure, and had better physician attention; in-person visits were comprehensive, had better patient-physician relationship, and better communication. Discussion: Patient satisfaction was lower in our study than what has been observed earlier, which may be explained by the primitive nature of our platform. Several variables related to the patients' disease process have an effect on patient satisfaction. Conclusion: Development of robust, structured platforms is necessary to fully utilize the potential of telemedicine in developing countries.

J Neurol Sci ; 428: 117583, 2021 09 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1313266


BACKGROUND: As the health systems around the world struggled to meet the challenges of COVID-19 pandemic, care of many non-COVID emergencies was affected. AIMS: The present study examined differences in the diagnosis, evaluation and management of stroke patients during a defined period in the ongoing pandemic in 2020 when compared to a similar epoch in year 2019. METHODS: The COVID stroke study group (CSSG) India, included 18 stroke centres spread across the country. Data was collected prospectively between February and July 2020 and retrospectively for the same period in 2019. Details of demographics, stroke evaluation, treatment, in-hospital and three months outcomes were collected and compared between these two time points. RESULTS: A total of 2549 patients were seen in both study periods; 1237 patients (48.53%) in 2019 and 1312 (51.47%) in 2020. Although the overall number of stroke patients and rates of thrombolysis were comparable, a significant decline was observed in the month of April 2020, during the initial period of the pandemic and lockdown. Endovascular treatment reduced significantly and longer door to needle and CT to needle times were observed in 2020. Although mortality was higher in 2020, proportion of patients with good outcome were similar in both the study periods. CONCLUSIONS: Although stroke admissions and rates of thrombolysis were comparable, some work flow metrics were delayed, endovascular stroke treatment rates declined and mortality was higher during the pandemic study period. Reorganization of stroke treatment pathways during the pandemic has likely improved the stroke care delivery across the globe.

COVID-19 , Stroke , Communicable Disease Control , Humans , India/epidemiology , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Stroke/epidemiology , Stroke/therapy , Time-to-Treatment