Scope of Telepsychiatry in Clinical Settings

Chapter

Abstract

While mental health disorders have high prevalence rates with chronic disability burden and enormous societal implications, there continues to be a dearth of specialized mental health service providers. A growing body of literature shows that telepsychiatry has the potential to improve access to care as well as train the future workforce in child and adolescent, forensics, geriatrics, and other subspecialties. In geriatrics, this is very timely given the increase in the aging population, prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease, and dearth of geriatric psychiatry providers. Moreover, health care services often tend to be concentrated in urban areas, worsening the rural–urban divide. Strengthening and expanding the existing human capital with specialized training, infrastructure, and integrating mental health into primary care could offer solutions for care in the elderly using telepsychiatry as an innovative healthcare tool. While there have been several telepsychiatry studies across a wide age and diagnostic range, there is paucity of literature in the geriatric age group. Telepsychiatry in the elderly based on the existing evidence in psychiatry can be applied effectively and safely in this population across a variety of clinical and educational settings.

Keywords

Telepsychiatry Geriatrics Clinical settings Training Research 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral ScienceUniversity of South Carolina School of MedicineColumbiaUSA

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