Florida International University to study telemedicine use among low-income, uninsured patients 

Miami-based Florida International University received a $50,000 grant to study the use of telemedicine during the COVID-19 pandemic and address health disparities among low-income and uninsured patients in South Florida.

The Center for Research on U.S. Latino HIV/AIDS and Drug Abuse provided the funding for the study, which will investigate racial, ethnic and sociodemographic difference in use of telemedicine among minority groups living in South Florida, said Sahar Ajabshir, PhD, assistant professor at FIU's medical school, according to the June 17 news release.

"Considering the higher prevalence of underlying medical conditions among minority and socioeconomically disadvantaged communities, and the loss of employer-based insurance among the millions who have lost their jobs, it is imperative to find a solution to maintain and expand access to healthcare for these communities in South Florida as we expect the second peak of COVID-19 pandemic during the upcoming fall and winter," Dr. Ajabshir said.

For the study, FIU is partnering with a local community-based primary care clinic, which provides healthcare services to low-income, uninsured members of the South Florida community. Dr. Ajabshir and her team will compare pre- and post- COVID-19 pandemic patients' data to assess differences in use of telemedicine versus in-person visits.

More articles on telehealth:
Senate leaders support making certain COVID-19 telehealth policies permanent 
3 characteristics of patients preferring telemedicine vs. in person visits
CMS' stance on permanent telehealth coverage: A timeline of Seema Verma's statements

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