Medicare Beneficiaries Show Unequal Telehealth Usage

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A new study of telehealth utilization among Medicare beneficiaries in Arkansas showed race/ethnicity and rural/urban disparities. The study, which reported that the association between the number of chronic conditions and telehealth was strongest among White and rural beneficiaries, is published in the peer-reviewed journal Telemedicine and e-Health. Click here to read the article now.

Innovative technologies such as telehealth can improve health care access in underserved areas and in aging populations with growing and complex medical needs. However, the use of telecommunications in clinical settings faces obstacles, particularly among rural and older populations, including broadband internet connectivity, provider and patient access to compatible devices, and digital literacy.

In the current study, Cari Bogulski, PhD, from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, and coauthors, investigated rural and racial/ethnic differences in telehealth use for the top 30 chronic conditions reported among Medicare beneficiaries in Arkansas.

“We found that the positive association between telehealth use and the number of chronic conditions was strongest among white and rural individuals, and weakest among urban and non-Hispanic Black or African American beneficiaries,” stated the investigators. “Telehealth systems saw immense growth during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“Disparity in health care delivery remains an issue. Telemedicine and telehealth can be of great help in this regard if applied across the entire health sector, says Charles R. Doarn, MBA, Editor-in-Chief of the Journal and Research Professor in the Department of Environmental and Public Health Sciences, and Director of the Space Research Institute for Discovery and Exploration at the University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio.

About the Journal

Telemedicine and e-Health is the Official Research Journal of the American Telemedicine Association (ATA) and the Official Journal of Digital Health Canada and the International Society for Telemedicine & e-Health. The Journal is led by Editor-in-Chief Charles R. Doarn, MBA, FATA, and is the leading peer-reviewed journal for cutting-edge telemedicine applications for achieving optimal patient care and outcomes. Complete tables of contents and a sample issue are available on the Telemedicine and e-Health website.

About the Publisher

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. is a global media company dedicated to creating, curating, and delivering impactful peer-reviewed research and authoritative content services to advance the fields of biotechnology and the life sciences, specialized clinical medicine, and public health and policy. For complete information, please visit the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. website.

/Public Release. This material from the originating organization/author(s) might be of the point-in-time nature, and edited for clarity, style and length. Mirage.News does not take institutional positions or sides, and all views, positions, and conclusions expressed herein are solely those of the author(s).View in full



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