Date of Conferral
Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)
Patients in rural areas in the United States do not have adequate health care facilities for illnesses and injuries not serious enough for emergency care, but telemedicine could have a positive impact both economically and medically to control rapidly rising health care costs, which is a significant percentage of the gross national product. The purpose of this case study was to explore the barriers physicians encountered in telemedicine implementation. Participants included 4 physicians who took part in face-to-face interviews in a clinical setting in Ohio to explore strategies used in implementing telemedicine. The results of these interviews, coupled with observations and document reviews, were analyzed. Complex adaptive systems theory was used to conceptualize the existing association between individual behavioral patterns and the social system in which the patterns take place. Significant themes showed (a) how physicians utilize the technology and (b) how the application allows physicians to build relationships with patients. The characterization strategies aimed to mitigate barriers in adopting telemedicine technology in rural markets were consistent with the study findings and the literature review. The results of this research study might contribute to positive social change through economic and health benefits to rural inhabitants by reducing the distance barrier to physicians' offices and increasing timely and effective patient diagnosis in the selected location.