School of Medicine Publications and Presentations

Telemedicine in Minority and Socioeconomically Disadvantaged Communities Amidst COVID-19 Pandemic

Document Type


Publication Date



In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, many otolaryngology practices worldwide have chosen to shift their consultations from in-person to telemedicine. The addition of the telemedicine model has allowed many physicians to resume their clinical duties while maintaining social distancing. Access to telemedicine generally relies on the patient’s ability to obtain and use technology—factors that are usually dictated by age, education, and socioeconomic status. The Rio Grande Valley, the home of the South Texas Sinus Institute, is a border community situated on the southern tip of Texas. The population is predominantly Hispanic, Spanish speaking, and of a lower socioeconomic level. The aim of this commentary is to describe the effects of the transition to telemedicine in a vulnerable community and the possible improvements that could be made to facilitate access to this resource.


Original published version available at

Publication Title

Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery



Academic Level

medical student