Telemedicine has previously been defined as "live two-way interactive video communication between a physician and a patient and/or another physician, where all participants are able to see and hear one another much like a face to face encounter." This concept has gained recent notoriety because of the great advances in telecommunications and the potential future increased cost-effectiveness associated with its utilization. We have developed a telementoring deployment protocol that can be effectively used to introduce a student to telementoring processes. The strict protocol uses military commands to facilitate smooth information transfer. The use of a concept called tactical information deployment provides the surgeon with rapid access to reference information in the operating suite. Multimedia interactive CD-ROMs, with digitized movie clips, illustrations, sound bits, and the latest academic review of the literature arm the surgeon with a database that establishes an unprecedented clinical adaptive capability (CAC). The availability of this information is invaluable to surgeons in their initial advanced laparoscopic procedural efforts. Telementoring simulator opportunities are included to acclimate the participant to the process. If the process seems comprehensive, it is meant to be. This is a high-risk situation, and a patient's welfare is on the line. If this concept is to reach its maximal healthcare delivery potential, responsible and academically credible training programs should be established with directional guidelines.
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