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April 14, 2021

Addressing Inequities in Older Adults’ Health: A Role for Emerging Technologies

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Anesthesiology, University of Michigan School of Medicine, Ann Arbor
  • 2Michigan Opioid Prescribing Engagement Network (OPEN), Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • 3Administration on Aging, Administration for Community Living, US Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, DC
  • 4Office of Science and Medicine, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, US Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, DC
JAMA Health Forum. 2021;2(4):e210680. doi:10.1001/jamahealthforum.2021.0680

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted inequities in health care for many groups of people in the US, including adults aged 65 years or older, uninsured and underinsured individuals, and persons residing in rural communities.1,2 Technology-enabled solutions have been used to bridge the access gap for underserved communities. While telehealth services have dramatically risen to facilitate care during the COVID-19 pandemic, emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence and 5G broadband, have even greater potential to transform health care. Careful attention must be paid to apply emerging technologies in an intentional and inclusive manner to reduce and reverse health inequities, especially among the older adult population—a rising demographic segment that is also disproportionately affected by COVID-19.

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