Non Face-to-Face Assitance

  • Provide guidelines on the issues to consider when implementing digital non-face-to-face care initiatives.
  • Provide recommendations of use and specific supporting content for professionals.

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The strategy

Latitud is the reference model for the implementation of digital solutions in the field of non-face-to-face healthcare. It takes into account aspects related to: 

  • General objectives
  • Care processes
  • Legal processes
  • Technological processes
  • Interoperability and assessment processes

Its goal is to guarantee the equality, quality and sustainability of healthcare services, both from the perspective of the public and the health system. In order to achieve these objectives, the underlying pillars of the model are the individual as the core element and the intensive use of data, and applies these through the configuration of dynamic care pathways. It takes into account both health aspects and the determinants of the individual (social, economic, competencies, environment, etc.), and the available care resources, in order to define care pathways adapted to the needs and which enable a combination of face-to-face and non-face-to-face care.

The model covers all areas of health intervention included in the healthcare value chain: health promotion and prevention, diagnosis, treatment and monitoring of the disease.

The non face-to-face strategy focuses on a common framework in order to deploy digital tools to reach the followin objectives:  

Digital Health in the world: Analyzing the state of art

The rapid evolution of technologies, together with the availability and lower cost of connectivity services, have enabled the design of systems and models of care which are increasingly adapted to the needs of the individual and their personal, clinical and social determinants.

In this context, all countries with advanced economies are incorporating non-face-to-face care strategies and services into healthcare delivery models. In 2018, the telemedicine and eHealth market was estimated to be worth 38.3 billion dollars, with an estimated annual growth rate of 19.2%, leading to an estimated global value of 130 billion dollars in 2025 according to the Telemedicine Market Share Report | Global 2019-2025 Industry Data.

In Catalonia, the foundations for the implementation of Digital Health were laid with the initial design of the Non-Face-to-Face Care Model (2013-2016). Subsequently, initiatives related to non-face-to-face care at the systemic level were included in the Health Plan (2016-2020) and the Catalan Ministry of Health’s Information Systems Master Plan.

At the level of territorial implementation, the providers of the Integrated Public Use Healthcare System of Catalonia (SISCAT) have promoted specific digital solutions, with different levels of deployment, including three initiatives which are notable mainly for their long trajectory and territorial scalability:

  • eConsulta stands out for being a project promoted by the healthcare system itself and deployed in the vast majority of primary care centres and which can be extended to specialized care.
  • Teleictus stands out for the ease of coordination between SISCAT providers.
  • Teledermatology stands out for its use of existing tools and for saving part of the population from the need to travel.

At the international level, multilateral organizations such as the United Nations, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Commission offer recommendations in their strategic plans to provide health systems with guidelines for responding to the challenges of the sector. For example, the WHO urges its member states to establish a set of practices related to digital health. The presentation of these practices acknowledges the potential of technology for supporting health systems in achieving sustainability goals, the possibilities they offer to generate changes in care models, and the need to ensure that they actually result in an improvement.

As reflected in the document “Comparative analysis of models of non-face-to-face care in the field of health”, most of the countries analysed are designing health strategies which are very focused on digitalization and new public relationship models, outlined in digital health plans.

Recommendations for the use of non-face-to-face care channels

In order to anlalyze the state of art for non face-to-face care model deployment at Central Catalonia Heañthcare Region, a research it has been performed throgh 4 differents hospitals of the territory:

The results are availiable at the following downloadable report.

The use of non-face-to-face care channels must allow for a form of personalized care adapted to the situation of the member of the public and the health resources available. With the aim of facilitating the use of these channels, a series of recommendations have been drawn up in conjunction with the care area and the information systems area of the Catalan Health Service in different areas aimed at different profiles and summarized in a series of monographic files:


Content focused to healthcare professionals

  • Summary of the use of non-face-to-face care channels and main aspects to consider.
  • Description of telephone support, eConsulta and videoConsulta channels.
  • Main legal aspects regarding compliance with data protection and privacy regulations.
  • Best practices for carrying out non-face-to-face visits correctly.

Content aimed at the management teams of centres

  • Organizational recommendations: aspects related to the activities required in centres for the use of non-face-to-face channels.
  • Main legal aspects regarding compliance with data protection and privacy regulations.
  • Checklist: summary of aspects to consider in the use of non-face-to-face care channels.
  • Best practices for carrying out non-face-to-face visits correctly.

To get all reports and other interest documents related to this section, please, check the 'Reference reports' button above