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The Contribution of Telemedicine in the Management of Childhood Heart Disease and its Impact on Continuing Education: Experience of Mohamed VI University Hospital of Marrakech and Children’s National Heart Institute of Washingto

  • Open or CloseNadia ELIS1,2,5*, Najwa I1,2, Soufiane K1, Craig AS3, Drissi B4, Fatiha B1,2, Fadl MRM1,2 and Mohamed B5

    1Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Mother and Child Hospital, Mohammed VI University Hospital, Morocco

    2Department of Health and Development, Marrakech Medical School, Cadi Ayyad University, Morocco

    3Children’s National Heart Institute, George Washington University School of Medicine, USA

    4Cardio‐Vascular Surgery Center, Arazzi Hospital, Mohammed VI University Hospital, Morocco

    5Marrakech Medical School, Cadi Ayyad University, Morocco

    *Corresponding author: Nadia ELIdrissi Slitine, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Mother and Child Hospital, Mohammed VI University Hospital, Marrakech, Laboratory Childhood, Health and Development, Medical School, Cadi Ayyad University, Marrakech Medical School, Cadi Ayyad University, Morocco

Submission: November 11, 2021Published: January 24, 2022

Abstract

The telemedicine is a form of remote medical practice using information and communication technologies. Our study is a retrospective, descriptive study of the epidemiological, clinical and paraclinical parameters of 140 patients followed in the department of childhood diseases of the Mother-Child Hospital of Mohammed VI Medical Center in Marrakech, who benefited from Telemedicine (TM) staff with the cardio-pediatric team of the Children’s National Heart Institute of Washington during a period of 5 years. The aim of our study is to present our academic experience in TM in the field of pediatric cardiology as a first Moroccan experience, to study the contribution of this technology in the management of pediatric patients with congenital or acquired cardiac diseases, and to report its impact on education and continuing training. The average age of our patients was 2.5 years, the sex ratio was 1.028. The mainly symptoms that led to the consultation included a heart murmur, cyanosis, respiratory distress, or dyspnea at feeding. On the physical examination 56.43% had a saturation lower than 92%, the patients’ weight was lower than the 10th percentile in 63.57% of the cases. The initial diagnoses of heart disease retained by echocardiography in our department were cyanogenic Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) in 54% of cases, non-cyanogenic CHD in 37.3% of cases, and acquired heart disease in 7.6% of patients. After TM staff, surgical treatment was recommended for 69.29%. At the end of videoconferencing, it was found that the diagnosis was confirmed in 49.29% of cases, completed in 28.57% and adjusted in 19.29%. A later assessment of the patients’ condition found that 19.3%recovered, 24.3% remained stable under treatment, 12.9% are waiting for surgery; however 35% of our patients died and 5.7% were lost to follow-up. We noted that the TM staffs promoted access to hyperspecialized advice and international expertise, it has also improved educational and learning curve as well as ultrasound techniques, thus contributing to the enhancement of patients’ care in the field of pediatric cardiology.

Keywords:Telemedicine; Pediatric cardiology; Education; Teaching; Marrakech; Washington

Abbreviations: CHD: Congenital Heart Disease; TM: Telemedicine; CVS: Cardiovascular Surgery; CNMC: Children’s National Medical Center of Washington; WHO: World Health Organization; FTP: File Transfer Protocol

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