Rural trauma care has been regarded as being the "challenge for the next decade." Trauma patients in rural areas face more struggles than their urban counterparts because of the absence of specialized trauma care, delay in providing immediate care to trauma victims, and longer transport times to reach a trauma center. Telemedicine is a promising tool for facilitating rural trauma care. This stellar tool creates a real-time link between a remotely located specialist and the local healthcare provider, especially during the initial management of the trauma patient, involving resuscitation and even intubation. However, the high cost of purchasing, setting up, and maintaining all the needed equipment has made telemedicine an expensive proposition for rural hospitals, which frequently have limited budgets. But recently, new improvements in communication technology have made smartphones an indispensable part of daily life, even in rural areas. These devices have great potential to improve patient care and enhance medical education because of their wide adoption and ease of use. In this article, we describe our initial teletrauma experience and the effect of smartphone implementation in patient care and medical education at the University of Arizona Medical Center in Tucson.
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