Telehealth can cut costs for cancer patients

Researchers led by the director of the department of medical oncology at the Townsville Hospital, Associate Professor Sabe Sabesan, reviewed 605 teleoncology consultations conducted with 147 patients.

They compared the cost of providing the services with estimated expenses associated with face-to-face care.

Projected costs included anticipated aeromedical retrievals as well as the likely travel and accommodation required for patients, specialists and patient escorts.

These figures were matched against the cost of setting up the model of care, including the purchase and maintenance of equipment and staff costs.

The results, published last week by the MJA, revealed a total net saving of more than $320,000.

The patients were managed with teleoncology via the Townsville Cancer