The Quebec health care system has long been a target of criticism. Since the mid-1970s, newspapers have been reporting on staff shortages, emergency room overcrowding, challenges in finding family doctors, waiting lists that keep getting longer, and so on. Optimal use of resources is vital if we wish to reduce waiting times and provide better and faster service to patients. Technological innovations, including telemedicine, are a way of improving the efficiency of the health care system and increasing the choices offered to patients. Sadly, the current government monopoly in the health care sector eliminates most natural incentives to innovate and make optimal use of resources.
The studies clearly show that telehomecare allows nurses to treat more patients and to deliver equivalent care. Telehomecare also leads to a substantial reduction in the cost of care, once the equipment has been amortized. There is a very significant decrease in costs related to the aggravation of chronic conditions, thanks to better follow-up. Finally, telehomecare also increases patient satisfaction.
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