Teledermatology, new pathways in community dermatology in Mexico
Lead Dermatologist: Dr. Roberto Estrada
Project team members:
Affiliation: Dermatologia Comunitaria, Mexico
This program aims to implement teledermatology to combat precarious environments in Guerrero, Mexico that threaten the continued education of HCPs and provision of dermatological services.
For more than 25 years, multidisciplinary groups of Health Care Professionals (HCPs), led by Dr. Roberto Estrada, have carried out dermatological community medical training and consultation in different cities of Guerrero state’s mountains in the south of Mexico.
Today, personnel safety conditions in Mexico, especially in the State of Guerrero, are precarious and prevent continuation of the work schedule, not to mention potential personal risk for all participants. The intention of this program is to continue educating HCPs in dermatology while providing and serving remote communities with dermatological services and treatment of complex cases through teledermatology.
Dermatologic medical attention is limited in several remote areas of Mexico. Guerrero is a state with important challenges of medical access, especially in the mountains region. The insecurity in recent years, linked to the drugs business in the region, complicates the essential activities of the community which includes the development of medical programs. Teledermatology offers the possibility to bring first line medical education to Health Care Practitioners (HCPs) in remote areas of the region, making it possible to offer medical consultations involving diagnosis and treatment by dermatologists.
Despite the altruist collaboration of the HCPs involved in the program and the coordination with official institutions such as National System for the Integral Development of the Family (DIF) and the Secretary of Health, funding is needed to support expenses for technical equipment, internet connectivity, first line treatments, as well as transportation and accommodation of HCP participants. These funds come from private donations and company sponsorships. The financial grant from the SKINPACT Awards will help by providing better implementation the program and will give it a better potential to enlarge its reach in other cities which have limited access to dermatology in Mexico.
The objective is to reach patients in the state of Guerrero where there will be simultaneous transmission to the 22 reception areas in the seven health care state jurisdictions. It is calculated that between 600 and 800 health workers will be trained in each of the courses, with 40 people per site. A permanent report of total activities will be done every quarter with the objective of tracking the results and scope of the project. This report will be shared and made available to any person or company supporting the project.
A final report will be published and distributed to the different institutions including the Health Care System and National System for the Integral Development of the Family (DIF).
Success criteria and evaluation
A total of 22 training sessions will be programmed during the year and will involve 600/800 Dermatology consultations split by quarter:
Q1 2017: 5 Training sessions /200 Consultations
Q2 2017: 6 Training sessions / 240 Consultations
Q3 2017: 6 Training sessions / 240 Consultations
Q4 2017: 5 Training sessions / 200 consultations
A survey will be conducted among the HCPs in order to better understand observed needs and adjust the areas of improvement of the project. This survey will make it possible to evaluate the quality of the project’s performance versus objectives.