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Abstract

This paper explores the potential role of telehealth in the expansion of mental health access for an innercity Latinx population by engaging with providers and stakeholders of various community health centers in the South Lawndale community of Chicago—a community whose population is predominantly Latinx, lowincome, and uninsured. While the literature and stakeholders cannot see telehealth surpassing or replacing standard face-to-face care, they see a lot of potential to make processes more efficient. Through analyzing the literature, survey data, interviews with stakeholders, and recruitment and education content, recommendations are made to 1) Move towards a mental health model that is more focused on preventative and trauma-focused care 2) Improve cultural-competency by encouraging the entry of Latinxs into the medical profession and by promoting cultural-competency training 3) Reframe and reposition the benefits of telehealth by channeling more funding and research into exploring the role of telehealth in addressing access 4) Use evidence to encourage the expansion of coverage for telehealth through CMS, private insurers, and employers and 5) Establish a clear legal framework to standardize the evaluation of telehealth interventions and provide a streamlined process for the licensing of providers.

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