Telehealth providers often perform diagnostic services to patients over the Internet, with some even offering treatment advice and medical prescriptions. With true telehealth encounters, the telehealth provider’s interaction with the patient is almost analogous to that of a face-to-face interaction – the physician can see the patient, examine the patient’s vital signs and offer the patient a treatment regiment. These types of interactions are considered to be true telehealth encounters, which greatly serve those living in rural and remote areas.
However, the telehealth community has also seen a rise in “rogue telehealth” sites, which have been the cause for concern for medical boards throughout the country. These sites are classified as Web-based entities that administer prescriptions, via an on-line platform through medical questionnaires, without previously examining the patient or establishing an existing physician-patient relationship. These types of entities have caused a great deal of consternation among legal professionals and telehealth providers because these sites are misrepresenting the concept of telehealth.