Synchronous, store-and-forward, remote patient monitoring, mHealth, ePrescribing. These terms all refer to different modes of telehealth delivery.
Synchronous = live, interactive audio-video connections that transmit information in both directions during the same connection time period.
Store-and-forward (also referred to as ‘asynchronous’) = the opposite of ‘synchronous’, it refers to the transmission of digital patient data, images and/or recordings, diagnostics and other medical information to a health care provider at a distant site for evaluation, opinion and/or diagnosis that may happen in a different time frame than when the images were taken or sent. Common examples are radiology, pathology, dermatology, ophthalmology and wound care.
Remote patient monitoring (“RPM”) = patients using medical devices not in the presence of a health care provider to perform a routine test, the results of which will be sent automatically to a health care professional in real time for monitoring and intervention if needed. These are more commonly used for chronic diseases such as glucose meters for diabetes, heart or blood pressure monitors for cardiac conditions or pulse oximeter and respiratory health sensors for lung disease.
mHealth = medical and other health care information supported by mobile communication devices such as mobile phones, tablets and wearables.
ePrescribing = electronic generation and direct transmission of a medical prescription instead of by paper or fax.