Consensus Conference

Topic: Developing a Patient-Centered Research Agenda to Reduce Disparities in Telehealth Uptake

Why: The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated underlying health and social inequities, with patients avoiding needed healthcare and providers triaging treatments by urgency. Use of telehealth has surged nationally with onset of the pandemic, as telehealth offers the possibility of care continuity with reduced COVID-19 risk. Yet this telehealth surge has highlighted an underlying digital divide threatening to further exacerbate patient inequities. Many of our most vulnerable patients have barriers to telehealth use, leading to disparities in engagement in telehealth-based clinical care and research. While recent programs have started to address digital access, other barriers to telehealth use (e.g. literacy, trust) remain largely unaddressed.

Who: Sixty-two patients, community organizations, researchers, educators, clinicians, and other key stakeholders who have lived experience in the area of telehealth use and barriers among vulnerable populations. 

What: A national consensus conference

When: September 28th-29th

Where: Zoom


  1. Identify best practices that support telehealth use and uptake among vulnerable populations by conducting a scoping review
  2. Clarify knowledge gaps through in-depth discussions 
  3. Prioritize research questions using voting mechanisms to set a patient-centered research agenda related to reducing disparities in telehealth uptake
  4. Develop a network for shared best practices, solutions, and innovations
  5. Disseminate conference findings

Conference Planning Committee

This conference is supported by a National Steering Committee and local Telehealth Advisory Board.

National Steering Committee

  • Kirsten Meisinger, MD MHCDS
    Director of Provider Engagement, Regional Medical Director, Medical Director of Sexual and Reproductive Health, Cambridge Health Alliance
  • Darcel T. Jackson, CPXP
    Patient and Family Coordinator, Patient Experience and Patient and Family Advisory Council, Children's National Hospital
  • Beverley H. Johnson
    President/CEO, Institute for Patient- and Family-Centered Care
  • Tabassum Salam, MD MBA FACP
    Chief Learning Officer, VP of Patient Experience, ChristianaCare
  • Kathy Hsu Wibberly, PhD
    Director, Mid-Atlantic Telehealth Resource Center

Telehealth Advisory Board

  • Desiree Collins Bradley - Co-Chair
  • Gail Weingarten -  Co-Chair
  • Jacquelynn Bayard
  • Kenneth Eng
  • Fernando Loyola
  • Penny Parker
  • Julia Wagner
  • Cut Zahara
  • Previous Members: Manjari Devkota, Antwoine McCoy

This work is funded through a Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) Eugene Washington PCORI Engagement Award (21350-TJU)