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Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, deaths from drug overdoses have reportedly surged, even as a relaxing of federal restrictions and a rapid shift by treatment providers has led to an explosion in telemedicine options for receiving help with substance use disorders.

The move to telemedicine — defined as delivering clinical services using telecommunications technology — alleviates some longstanding barriers to treatment, but it also raises new questions, particularly as pandemic-related workplace closures and other stressors put people struggling with addiction at increased risk. [...]