Telemedicine struggles to be an option for everyone in the wake of coronavirus

Telehealth services are being met with a flood of patients in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

As hospitals and public officials urge patients with symptoms of Covid-19 to avoid emergency rooms, online-only services that allow patients to consult with doctors over the phone, video, or direct message are a natural fit. But as demand increases, telehealth providers will confront two challenges: capacity and access. 

For those with private insurance, many pr...

Biden is wrong: A single-payer healthcare system is not the problem in Italy

The whole of Italy has been on lockdown to control the spread of Covid-19 for more than 10 days now.

The regions of Lombardia and Veneto are at the epicenter of the crisis and have been dealing with the epidemic for much longer than that. Hospitals there are overrun. There is not enough space in intensive care units (ICUs), which are necessary to treat about 10% of those infected with the disease. The situation has been compared to a war.

During the latest Demo...

As an American, I felt safer from coronavirus in the UK until herd immunity came along

On Jan. 24, I got a text from the UK’s National Health Service telling me if I had returned from Wuhan and felt ill, to call a number to arrange a phone consultation. The request to stay away from my local NHS facility was polite but firm: “Please do not attend.” One month later I got another text, with a longer list of countries (China, Hong Kong, Italy’s Lombardy region, Japan, Macau, Malaysia, Republic of Korea, Singapore and Taiwan). If ill, self-isolate and call 111.

I...

Coronavirus is revealing ugly truths about social structure in the US

The coronavirus pandemic is affecting every possible aspect of life—and thus confronting Americans with ugly truths about the way US society functions.

Any crisis or emergency throws into sharp relief the lack of a social safety net in the US. This virus outbreak, the most widespread in decades, is exposing the country’s social vulnerabilities all at the same time. Some of them will be addressed in a comprehensive relief package that Congress and the White House agreed upon...