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Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2018, 3(3), 88; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed3030088

A Teledermatology Pilot Programme for the Management of Skin Diseases in Primary Health Care Centres: Experiences from a Resource-Limited Country (Mali, West Africa)

1
Department of Dermatology, Faculty of Medicine and Odontostomatology, Bamako, Mali
2
CERTES, Bamako, Mali
3
Service de Dermatologie, Hôpital Pasteur, Colmar 68000, France
4
Département de Radiologie et Informatique médicale, Université de Genève, Genaven 1211, Switzerland
Teledermali Team: Samba Ba, Dokala Diarra, Aoua Togora, Issa Koné, Modibo Traoré, Aissata Diallo, Chaka Koné, Drissa Traoré, Diakalia Berthé, Ousmane Cissé, Boubacar Sidiki Nanacassé, Abdoul Karim Doumbia, Sidi Niaré, Mamady Yattara, Bakary Traoré, Moussa Traoré.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 24 July 2018 / Revised: 4 August 2018 / Accepted: 6 August 2018 / Published: 17 August 2018
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Abstract

In sub-Saharan Africa, in particular in rural areas, patients have limited access to doctors with specialist skills in skin diseases. To address this issue, a teledermatology pilot programme focused on primary health centres was set up in Mali. This study was aimed at investigating the feasibility of this programme and its impact on the management of skin diseases. The programme was based on the store-and-forward model. Health care providers from 10 primary centres were trained to manage common skin diseases, to capture images of skin lesions, and to use an e-platform to post all cases beyond their expertise for dermatologists in order to obtain diagnosis and treatment recommendations. After training, the cases of 180 patients were posted by trained health workers on the platform. Ninety-six per cent of these patients were properly managed via the responses given by dermatologists. The mean time to receive the expert’s response was 32 h (range: 13 min to 20 days). Analysis of all diseases diagnosed via the platform revealed a wide range of skin disorders. Our initiative hugely improved the management of all skin diseases in the targeted health centres. In developing countries, Internet accessibility and connection quality represent the main challenges when conducting teledermatology programmes. View Full-Text
Keywords: teledermatology; Africa; primary health care; skin diseases; tele-expertise teledermatology; Africa; primary health care; skin diseases; tele-expertise
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Faye, O.; Bagayoko, C.O.; Dicko, A.; Cissé, L.; Berthé, S.; Traoré, B.; Fofana, Y.; Niang, M.; Traoré, S.T.; Karabinta, Y.; Gassama, M.; Guindo, B.; Keita, A.; Tall, K.; Keita, S.; Geissbuhler, A.; Mahé, A.; Teledermali Team. A Teledermatology Pilot Programme for the Management of Skin Diseases in Primary Health Care Centres: Experiences from a Resource-Limited Country (Mali, West Africa). Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2018, 3, 88.

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