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Introduction to ethical considerations

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Advanced technology iv  especially has increased the use of telemedicine in the treatment and rehabilitation of diseases. Therefore, the ethical aspect of these attempts becomes an issue. To ensure the confidentiality of patients’ information and increase data security, there is a need to monitor cases of therapists’ inefficiency and improve the quality of healthcare services, which all highlight the necessity of ethical issues in telemedicine.  

As defined by the World Health Organization (WHO), telemedicine is the provision of online healthcare services when the distance between a service provider and patient matters. 

On the other hand, “ethical issues in telemedicine” implies a consideration of a patient’s benefit or loss in receiving telemedicine services and his/her right to choose the therapy and react to dis-satisfactory services. In fact, initial considerations of ethical issues in telemedicine began in the early 1980s at the same time as the rapid growth of technology. In 2006, the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities (ASBH) was officially assigned by the WHO to investigate ethical issues in telemedicine. The prerequisites were the health-related body of knowledge and skills. 

The development of guidelines on telemedicine services contributed greatly to the consistency of the services provided and ensuring patients of the security of the services. Standards set to this aim managed to raise the quality of healthcare services. The use of the internet system by 87% of adults on the one hand and the increasing rate of receiving online health-related information (72%) on the other highlighted the role of ethical issues in telemedicine to raise the quality of healthcare services. 

The widespread use of the Internet, email, and smartphones today has further underlined the significance of ethical issues in telemedicine. Therefore, to ensure the security and confidentiality of patient’s information, there is a severe need to set ethical rules and regulations. The present study v reviewed and classified the body of related literature on ethical issues in telemedicine and focused on the use of telemedicine from an ethical perspective.