Telemedicine provides healthcare services remotely and represents a fundamental resource for the management of rare and fragile patients. Tele-health implementation is a main objective of the European Reference Networks (ERNs) mission to accelerate diagnosis for rare diseases. TeleNewCARe is a pilot case-control project which evaluates the efficacy and satisfaction of telegenetics for neuromuscular and cardiac adult patients, compared to face-to-face genetic counselling. The virtual sessions were co-hosted by a medical geneticist and a neurologist/cardiologist. Specific questionnaires (Clinical Genetics Satisfaction Questionnaire (CGS), Telemedicine Satisfaction Questionnaire (TSQ) and a Satisfaction Questionnaire for medical geneticists) were used to assess the effectiveness and fulfilment of telecounselling, both for patients and health care providers. Satisfaction expressed for telegenetics did not significantly differ from face-to-face counselling. The virtually enrolled patients declared they had the possibility to relate confidentially with the specialists, to share information and to be informed in an exhaustive way about their disease. Almost all patients declared themselves willing to reuse the telecounselling in the future. The multidisciplinary care was perceived as a significant added value. No overt technical problems were reported although the need for digital skills and tools can limit patients’ compliance. Our experience supports telegenetics as a valid alternative to traditional genetic counselling in cardiac and neuromuscular patients. This innovative approach facilitates multidisciplinary care, grants a periodical follow up, without forcing patients to discomfortable travelling, and allows to maintain expert care. This result meets the ERNs needs to reduce patients’ burden to access and monitor their healthcare.

TeleNEwCARe: An Italian case-control telegenetics study in patients with Hereditary NEuromuscular and CARdiac diseases

Farne M.
Primo
;
Fortunato F.
Secondo
;
Neri M.;Balla C.;Armaroli A.;Straudi S.;Sette E.;Bertini M.;Ferlini A.
Penultimo
;
2023

Abstract

Telemedicine provides healthcare services remotely and represents a fundamental resource for the management of rare and fragile patients. Tele-health implementation is a main objective of the European Reference Networks (ERNs) mission to accelerate diagnosis for rare diseases. TeleNewCARe is a pilot case-control project which evaluates the efficacy and satisfaction of telegenetics for neuromuscular and cardiac adult patients, compared to face-to-face genetic counselling. The virtual sessions were co-hosted by a medical geneticist and a neurologist/cardiologist. Specific questionnaires (Clinical Genetics Satisfaction Questionnaire (CGS), Telemedicine Satisfaction Questionnaire (TSQ) and a Satisfaction Questionnaire for medical geneticists) were used to assess the effectiveness and fulfilment of telecounselling, both for patients and health care providers. Satisfaction expressed for telegenetics did not significantly differ from face-to-face counselling. The virtually enrolled patients declared they had the possibility to relate confidentially with the specialists, to share information and to be informed in an exhaustive way about their disease. Almost all patients declared themselves willing to reuse the telecounselling in the future. The multidisciplinary care was perceived as a significant added value. No overt technical problems were reported although the need for digital skills and tools can limit patients’ compliance. Our experience supports telegenetics as a valid alternative to traditional genetic counselling in cardiac and neuromuscular patients. This innovative approach facilitates multidisciplinary care, grants a periodical follow up, without forcing patients to discomfortable travelling, and allows to maintain expert care. This result meets the ERNs needs to reduce patients’ burden to access and monitor their healthcare.
2023
Farne, M.; Fortunato, F.; Neri, M.; Farne, M.; Balla, C.; Albamonte, E.; Barp, A.; Armaroli, A.; Perugini, E.; Carinci, V.; Facchini, M.; Chiarini, L.; Sansone, V. A.; Straudi, S.; Tugnoli, V.; Sette, E.; Sensi, M.; Bertini, M.; Evangelista, T.; Ferlini, A.; Gualandi, F.
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