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Medical e-commerce for regional Australia-Virtual Clinic Call Centre (VC3)

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3 Author(s)
Kumar, D.K. ; Sch. of Electr. Eng, RMIT Univ., Melbourne, Vic., Australia ; Howard, A. ; Mikelaitis, P.

In comparison to their capital city counterparts, the residents of rural and regional Australia have less access to health care professionals and services. There is a reluctance of general practitioners to practice in the bush. Telecommunications technology has been an enabler to reducing the difference. High bandwidth video conferencing, for example, has provided specialist psychiatric consultations to areas that previously had no access to this service. But like other implementations of technology, this has provided more business opportunities to the cities at the expense of regional Australia. Thus, the current implementation of telecommunication technology has resulted in loss of revenue of the regions, increasing the bias towards the cities. Further, the system is not economically viable and requires the government to inject funds for the smooth operation of the system. The paper proposes the use of telecommunication technology for access to health facilities to the communities of regional Australia but with a difference. It proposes a self supporting method of implementation of the service to the bush without draining the resources of regional Australia. It attempts to eradicate the problem at the roots level by attempting to provide commercial viability for GP clinics in the bush. These clinics would provide health services by physical and virtual clinics and thus will serve the communities as well as making a profit

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Information Technology Applications in Biomedicine, 2000. Proceedings. 2000 IEEE EMBS International Conference on

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