Session Date & Time: None. Available on demand.
*Purpose: During the COVID-19 pandemic, telehealth utilization has allowed for the delivery of healthcare while protecting patients, caregivers, healthcare workers, and the community from exposure. We examined the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on utilization of telehealth in the care of all solid organ transplant patients in all phases of transplant care at our center.
*Methods: All patients seen at Vanderbilt University Medical Center for solid organ transplant during any phase of care (referral, evaluation, waitlist, or post-transplantation) from July 1, 2019 through October 31, 2020 were included in this retrospective analysis. Patients seen from July 1, 2019 through February 29, 2020 were identified as a Pre-COVID-19 era cohort. Patients seen from March 1, 2020 through October 31, 2020 were the COVID-19 era cohort. Pretransplant phases of care included referral, evaluation and waitlist; those transplanted were considered posttransplant. Telehealth visits included telemedicine, defined as those conducted by face-to-face (F2F) videoconferencing, and telephone.
*Results: Total visit number for all solid organs (kidney, liver, heart, lung, and pancreas) were similar between eras (12585 vs. 13677) [Figure]. There was a significant increase in the use of telehealth in the COVID-19 era for all organ types with the pre-era ranging from 1.2-4.3% while post ranged from 22.4-45.6% [Table]. Telemedicine was not used during the pre-COVID-19 era and its use increased to 17.5-23.7% of all visits by organ type during the COVID-era.
*Conclusions: The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the use of telehealth in all phases and types of solid organ transplantation. The use of telemedicine although increased represents a minority of total visits and the increased use of telephone visits suggest barriers may remain to more widespread adoption of F2F technology that warrant further investigation.
To cite this abstract in AMA style:Forbes R, Kumm K, O'Dell H, Smith K, Smith L, Dreher A, Schaefer H, Concepcion B. Solid Organ Transplant Telehealth Utilization Significantly Increased During the Covid-19 Pandemic: Experience at a Single, Large Volume Center [abstract]. Am J Transplant. 2021; 21 (suppl 3). https://atcmeetingabstracts.com/abstract/solid-organ-transplant-telehealth-utilization-significantly-increased-during-the-covid-19-pandemic-experience-at-a-single-large-volume-center/. Accessed June 15, 2021.
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