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Evolution of telemedicine in the space program and earth applicationsRemote monitoring of crew, spacecraft, and environmental health has always been an integral part of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) operations. Crew safety and mission success face a number of challenges in outerspace, including physiological adaptations to microgravity, radiation exposure, extreme temperatures and vacuum, and psychosocial reactions to space flight. The NASA effort to monitor and maintain crew health, system performance, and environmental integrity in space flight is a sophisticated and coordinated program of telemedicine combining cutting-edge engineering with medical expertise. As missions have increased in complexity, NASA telemedicine capabilities have grown apace, underlying its role in the field. At the same time, the terrestrial validation of telemedicine technologies to bring healthcare to remote locations provides feedback, improvement, and enhancement of the space program. As NASA progresses in its space exploration program, astronauts will join missions lasting months, even years, that take them millions of miles from home. These long-duration missions necessitate further technological breakthroughs in tele-operations and autonomous technology. Earth-based monitoring will no longer be real-time, requiring telemedicine capabilities to advance with future explorers as they travel deeper into space. The International Space Station will serve as a testbed for the telemedicine technologies to enable future missions as well as improve the quality of healthcare delivery on Earth.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
Nicogossian, A. E.
(NASA Headquarters Washington, DC United States)
Pober, D. F.
Roy, S. A.
Date Acquired
August 21, 2013
Publication Date
March 1, 2001
Publication Information
Publication: Telemedicine journal and e-health : the official journal of the American Telemedicine Association
Volume: 7
Issue: 1
ISSN: 1530-5627
Subject Category
Life Sciences (General)
Distribution Limits
long duration
NASA Discipline General Space Life Sciences
Mercury Project
short duration
Mir Project
Skylab Project
Flight Experiment
Apollo Project
Project Gemini
STS Shuttle Project

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