Table 3

Studies on drivers and barriers of remote care implementation in RMDs (PICO 3)

StudyStudy designParticipantsOverall aimParticipants caracteristics*Remote care—driversRemote care—barriersRoB†
Bullock et al46Cross-sectionalParents/Guardians of patients with RMDsSurvey to assess barriers to care and alternative models of care159Fewer missing days of school/work, less travel time/distance, easier appointment availability, less need for lodging, lower costsInsurance approvals, inadequate knowledge about telemedicineNA
Dejaco et al47Cross-sectionalProfessionals working in the field of rheumatology in EULAR countriesSurvey to assess impact of COVID-19 measures on rheumatology care128675% rheumatologists
11% rheumatologists in training
13% HCPs in rheumatology
Cancellation or postponement of non-urgent tests/appointments either by the service provider or by patients themselves, treatment decisions being postponedNA
Ferucci et al48Prospective cohortPatients with RAAssess outcomes (RAPID-3, functional status, etc) after the start of telemedicine care122Age: 52.2 y
Female: 83%
Last FU: 12 mo
Previous use of telemedicine by patients and rheumatologists, use of video callsInexperience in telemedicine, technical issuesROBINS-I: serious
Ferwerda et al49Cross-sectionalPatients with RATelephone interview about advantages and disadvantages of internet-based CBT50Age: 54.4 y
Female: 50%
Less travelling time, lower costs, flexibility of time and place, no waiting times, potential ease of seeking help via internet, anonymityLimitation on provider choice, lack of F2F contact, inexperience with telemedicine, data security issues, increased time spend at the computer, more self-discipline might be necessaryNA
Lawford et al52Cross-sectionalPatients with hip and/or knee OASurvey to investigate the perceptions of patients on remote delivery of exercise therapy330Age: 62 y
Female: 78%
Saved time, ease to use, maintaining privacy, use of video calls rather than phone callsLack of physical contactNA
Lawford et al53Cross-sectionalTherapistsSurvey to investigate the perceptions of therapists on remote delivery of exercise therapy217Age: 15 y clinical experience
Female: 72%
Saved patient’s time, convenient for patients, good privacyInexperience in telemedicine, technical issues, lack of confidenceNA
Magnol et al54Cross-sectionalPatients with RAQuestionnaire on eHealth use (eg, internet, mobile apps, connected devices)575Age: 62 y
Female: 78%
Membership in a patient association, and education programme, ease to use, data securityInadequate use of technologyNA
Opinc et al57Cross-sectionalPatients/Caregivers with RMDsSurvey on teleconsultation during the COVID-19 pandemic244Age: 41 y
Female: 93%
Direct contact to the physician via emailLack of possibility to perform additional tests and physical exam; inexperience in telemedicineNA
Barber et al45QualitativePrimary care physician and patient researchers with OAInterview on views on OA and an app for patient self-management9Improved understanding and communication on diseaseTechnical issuesNA
Hinman et al50QualitativePhysical therapists, Patients with OAInterview on the experience of receiving/giving physical therapy exercises via teleconference12Ease to use, time efficient, flexible, empowerment to self-management; improved therapeutic relationships and patient benefitsLack of clinical examinationNA
Knudsen et al51QualitativePatients with RA Interview on the experience of a patient-reported outcome-based telehealth follow-up15Flexible and resource-saving, improved knowledge of RA, increased communicationDifficult to accommodate to different needs, wishes and abilities of patientsNA
Mathijssen et al55QualitativePatients with RA Transcript of audio recordings regarding support for medication use and suitability of eHealth technologies28Improved information, practical and emotional supportLack of personal interaction, privacy and security issues, quality and reliability informationNA
Navarro-Millán et al56QualitativePatients with RA Transcript of audio recodrings regarding the recording of between visit disease activity and other patient-reported outcomes and on sharing the information with the healthcare provider31Improved communication, information and social peer supportTechnical issues, data collectionNA
  • *Age/Female ratio was calculated by the sum of age (mean or median) or female ratio (%) of intervention and control groups, respectively and divided by the number of groups, unless reported otherwise.

  • †Overall RoB is reported according to the ROBINS-I tool (low, moderate, serious RoB). Cross-sectional and qualitative studies were assessed using the Joanna Briggs Institute Critical Appraisal checklists which do not determine an overall RoB (therefore reported as ‘NA’).

  • CBT, cognitive behavioural therapy; F2F, face-to-face; FU, follow-up; mo, months; NA, not available; OA, osteoarthritis; RA, rheumatoid arthritis; RAPID-3, Routine Assessment of Patient Index Data 3; RMDs, rheumatic musculoskeletal diseases; RoB, risk of bias; ROBINS-I, risk-of-bias tool for non-randomised studies of interventions; y, years.