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Gathering important information from a patient’s medical history, in a sensitive and empathetic way, is an essential part of all good medical decision making. A recent and unseen effect of COVID19 on our hospitals was the impact on the teaching, learning and assessment of over 600 medical students who have had the physical examination and face-to-face contact part of their training programmes suspended during the lockdown. However, we were delighted that a number of Wellington Hospitals Foundation volunteers have been able to assist Otago University of Wellington with a pilot programme, designed to allow fourth year medical students to take virtual patient case histories. We thank those wonderful volunteers who, at very short notice, agreed to be part of this online project.