HumanInsight Characteristic Distinctions Between Pre-/Post-COVID-19 Teledermatology Adoptees: A Cross-Sectional United States-based Analysis and the Implications for Dermatologic Healthcare Equity
J Drugs Dermatol. 2023 Jan 1;22(1):101-104. doi: 10.36849/JDD.7169.
BACKGROUND: Studies suggest potential heterogeneity in telemedicine adoption with potential to exacerbate healthcare access inequity.
METHODS: A pre-validated survey was electronically sent to a proprietary listserv of practicing US-based dermatologists. Results were stratified by when teledermatology was adopted. Chi-square and odds ratios (OR) with 95% confidence intervals (95%CI) were used to analyze categorical data while single-factor ANOVA with posthoc Tukey-Kramer was used for continuous data.
RESULTS: 338 practicing US-based dermatologists completed the questionnaire. Academic/Government dermatologists were 4-times more likely (OR 4.08, 95%CI 2.37-7.03) to adopt teledermatology pre-COVID than private-practice dermatologists. Dermatologists with ≤10 years of experience were 1.8-times (OR 1.8, 95%CI 1.01-3.18) and 2.82-times more likely (OR 2.82, 95%CI 0.78-10.25) to adopt teledermatology pre-COVID-19 or at all, respectively, compared to dermatologists with ≥20 years of experience. Teledermatology adopters practiced more medical-dermatology (P<.0001) than non-adopters, who reported practicing more dermatologic surgery (P=.003; Tukey-Kramer α<.05) and dermatopathology (P<.0001; Tukey-Kramer α<.05). Pre-COVID-19 adopters were 4-times more likely (OR 4.69, 95%CI 1.46-15.07) to switch/incorporate live-interactive-only teledermatology (LI) post-COVID-19. Post-COVID-19 adopters were 6-times more likely (OR 6.09, 95%CI 3.36-11.06) to utilize LI than Pre-COVID-19 adopters. Pre-COVID-19 adopters use teledermatology for a larger proportion of patient visits than Post-COVID-19 adopters (19.6% v 10.4%, P<.0001), but also are 3.43-times more likely (OR 3.43, 95%CI 1.82-6.46) to report future decreases in usage.
LIMITATIONS: Cross-sectional retrospective survey and potential response bias.
CONCLUSION: Current teledermatology usage may be a suitable tool for medical-dermatology-focused practices. Material hurdles still exist for procedurally-oriented practices and future studies should investigate these barriers to maximize equitable access to dermatological care. J Drugs Dermatol. 2023;21(1):101-104. doi:10.36849/JDD.7169.
PMID:36607754 | DOI:10.36849/JDD.7169
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