Last week, JAMA Internal Medicine published a two-page research letter by the Rand Corporation that played into a national conversation about the efficacy of telemedicine — specifically Teladoc, a company which is both about to IPO and embroiled in a potentially precedent-setting legal battle with its home state of Texas over whether the Texas Medical Board has the right to regulate the practice of telemedicine. (An early injunction by the court last week favored Teladoc.)
So it’s perhaps no surprise that different people have read the Rand Corporation’s findings in different ways.
While MobiHealthNews headlined our version of the story with the finding that telemedicine and in-person doctors prescribed antibiotics at roughly the same rate, other publications like Modern Healthcare focused on another finding in the study: that telemedicine doctors were more likely to prescribe broad-spectrum antibiotics. Still others, like mHealthNews, chose to lead with the relevant question: “Are doctors overprescribing via telehealth?”
Though at first glance the headlines might seem to disagree (some say the same amount of antibiotics are being prescribed, some say more) in fact none of them is wrong. So what does the study really say? Keep reading>>