Inequitable access is identified as the top barrier to telehealth. As broadband access is instrumental to usage of telehealth yet noted to be a “super” social determinate of health, telehealth has unfortunately amplified health-care inequity and increased health-care disparities. Other main barriers to telehealth access include lack of trained support staff, limited budgets that limit clinical and administrative support and lack of reimbursement. Continued partnership between key stakeholders is critical in continuing to provide health care that is equitably to all patients. Though governmental programs have improved internet access and connectivity, much work is still needed. Providing low to high technology options, telehealth platform training for support staff and providers, subsidized and improved budgets for telehealth, and improved reimbursement are vital to close the digital divide and improve health-care disparities.
Emerging Practices in Telehealth: Best Practices in a Rapidly Changing Field, 2023, Pages 131-140