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As Covid-19 drives many patients away from in-person care and toward virtual visits, experts warn that the nation’s most vulnerable members may be shut out of the booming telehealth business.

Federal policymakers temporarily relaxed regulations to make it easier to provide virtual care during the pandemic, fueling a shift toward telemedicine that has become so popular among patients and providers that there are now a number of proposals to make the changes permanent. Just this week, President Trump signed an executive order that would permanently extend some of those policies.


But a pair of new studies published this week show that there are barriers to virtual visits that regulatory changes alone can’t fix.

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