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Iranian Association of Medical InformaticsFrontiers in Health Informatics2676-710410120210808Use of Telemedicine in the Management of Viral Respiratory Disease Epidemics (SARS, MERS, Influenza, and COVID-19): A Review29729710.30699/fhi.v10i1.297ENSadriehHajesmaeel GohariPhD of Health Information Management, Medical Informatics Research Center, Institute for Futures Studies in Health, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman,. e.shafiei.sh@gmail.comElahehShafieiKambizBahaadinbeigy202104252021071120210608Objectives: The epidemic of viral respiratory diseases in the last 20 years has affected many people around the world. In these situations, telemedicine may reduce unnecessary contacts and risk of exposure to infection. This study aimed to review the papers performed to manage viral respiratory disease epidemics using telemedicine. Methods: The PubMed and Scopus databases were searched in May 2020 for this systematic review study. Data were extracted from the final included papers based on the items such as author, country, type of epidemic, telemedicine modality, telecommunication method, objective, participants, clinical outcome, cost, and satisfaction. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze data.Results: From 365 retrieved papers, 18 papers were included. Most of the papers were done in the USA and China (67%). Half of the papers were done during the COVID-19 pandemic. Real-time modality was used in 78% of the papers. The telecommunication method in half of the papers was internet-based. Patients’ management and treatment was the main objective of 6 papers. In 81% of the teleconsultation papers, the consultation was performed between patients and healthcare providers. Clinical outcome of all papers showed that telemedicine was successful in the management of viral respiratory disease epidemics. Cost and satisfaction outcomes were considered in a few papers. Conclusion: There is considerable evidence to show that telemedicine is a useful and convenient method to manage and control viral respiratory disease epidemics. Therefore, countries should pay special attention to telemedicine to control the current pandemic and future epidemics and use it extensively.

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