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Copyright (c) 2004 The Trustee of Indiana University 
Indiana Law Review

Cybermedicine: Defying and Redefining Patient Standards of Care


37 Ind. L. Rev. 845


Julie Reed *



In November 2001, 1 went online treating Indiana patients over the Internet. 2 On October 16, 2002, the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation issued a Cease and Desist Order prohibiting ("MyDoc") from treating Illinois patients. 3 The decision was monumental. MyDoc, an Indiana-based company which called itself "the nation's first round-the-clock Internet-based health service offering doctor diagnosis, treatment, prescriptions and follow-up care," intended to expand nationwide within two years. 4 Instead, it was shut down in only its first expansion state after just six months. 5 The decision seemed to answer the question that everyone has been asking: What is the standard of care in the cybermedicine context? In Illinois, the answer is clear. Physicians may not treat patients by prescribing medication absent a physical examination or a physician-patient relationship. 6

The practice of medicine is regulated by the individual states. The Illinois decision is not yet the uniformly accepted view across the country, as evidenced by MyDoc's continued operation in Indiana. 7 The regulation of cybermedicine is currently a line-drawing exercise. As the Internet continues to grow in popularity and accessibility, authorities will be forced to determine what kinds of information and interaction they are going to allow on it. Further, with the advent of online medicine, regulators are now forced to decide just how far to let the practice of medicine go. Illinois appears to have drawn their line.

This Note analyzes whether, in a cybermedicine context, the ...
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