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Telehealth Policy

Telemedicine-Friendly FAST Act Heads Back to Congress

February 17, 2017 - Congress is set to revisit a bill that would expand Medicare reimbursement nationwide for telestroke services. The Furthering Access to Stroke Telemedicine (FAST) Act, originally introduced in 2015, would alter the Social Security Act to allow Medicare coverage of telestroke services no matter where the patient is located. Current legislation allows those services only in certain rural areas....


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Telemedicine-Friendly FAST Act Heads Back to Congress

by Eric Wicklund

Congress is set to revisit a bill that would expand Medicare reimbursement nationwide for telestroke services. The Furthering Access to Stroke Telemedicine (FAST) Act, originally introduced in 2015, would alter the Social Security Act to allow...

Utah Senator Chooses Telemedicine’s Value Over Politics

by Eric Wicklund

Utah senators are trying to de-politicize a telemedicine bill by removing language that would have banned so-called abortions-by-telemedicine. The Senate Standing Committee on Health and Human Services voted 6-2 this week to approve an amended...

Congress to Revisit School-Based Telehealth Legislation

by Eric Wicklund

Two Michigan senators have re-introduced a bill that aims to boost telehealth services in schools by connecting them with community health centers and providing more avenues for reimbursement. The Hallways to Health Act, co-sponsored by Sens....

Texas, Utah Move Forward With New Telemedicine Rules

by Eric Wicklund

The battle in Texas to ease one of the country’s most restrictive telemedicine laws may be ending, with a compromise bill reported to be heading to the Legislature. State Sen. Charles Schwertner, R-Georgetown, told the Houston Chronicle...

WEDI Brief Outlines Challenges to Telehealth Reimbursement

by Eric Wicklund

Healthcare providers face many challenges in launching and sustaining a telehealth program – including finding the right CPT codes, if they exist, for reimbursement. In many cases, a telehealth or telemedicine procedure is so new, a proper...

How Project ECHO Will Advance Rural Health through Telehealth

by Sheri Stoltenberg

As we leave 2016 behind and celebrate the New Year, we are seeing continued progress for telehealth and rural health initiatives. One of the biggest milestones is Congress’ passing of the bipartisan, bicameral bill S. 2873 (the counterpart...

CMS Urged to Reimburse Telehealth for Stroke, Cardiac Care

by Eric Wicklund

The American Heart Association is calling on Medicare to support telehealth, saying the technology is “tragically underutilized” to treat stroke patients and those with heart disease and could save the country billions of dollars...

Michigan’s New Telehealth Law Requires Patient Consent

by Eric Wicklund

Michigan lawmakers have approved telehealth legislation that enables healthcare providers to use the technology with the patient's consent. S.B. 753, introduced in February by State Sen. Peter MacGregor, passed unanimously in the House on...

Senate Unanimously Passes Telemedicine Legislation

by Eric Wicklund

A telemedicine program born at the University of New Mexico is set to become a national model for pushing healthcare into remote and underserved regions. The Senate on Tuesday approved by a 97-0 vote S. 2873, the Expanding Capacity for Health...

Pennsylvania Joins Telehealth-Friendly Licensing Compact for Doctors

by Eric Wicklund

Pennsylvania has joined the group of states supporting the telehealth-friendly Interstate Medical Licensure Compact, which goes into effect in just over two months. Gov. Tom Wolf’s signature last week on legislation unanimously approved...

Payers urge CBO to Give Telemedicine a Fair Shake

by Eric Wicklund

Nearly a dozen national health plans have asked the Congressional Budget Office to pay more attention to telemedicine when scoring Congressional bills on Medicare. In a letter to CBO Director Keith Hall, 11 health plans say telemedicine programs...

mHealth Group Wants to Define Store-And-Forward Telehealth

by Eric Wicklund

mHealth proponents have drafted a definition for “asynchronous” telehealth, and they’re hoping federal officials will use it when dealing with MACRA issues and CPT codes. The Connected Health Initiative (CHI), a group organized...

ATA: Payment Reform Tops the List of Telemedicine Trends

by Eric Wicklund

New payment models are the top priority in telemedicine these days – and they’ll be the linchpin in the healthcare industry’s move to value-based care. That’s the viewpoint of the American Telemedicine Association, which...

New Jersey Moves to Regulate Telehealth

by Eric Wicklund

One of the last states to regulate telehealth is moving forward with legislation that would permit video visits and consults and store-and-forward technology – but not healthcare delivered by phone, e-mail or text message. The New Jersey...

Delaware Board Tries to Limit Telehealth Use for Nutritionists

by Eric Wicklund

Another state agency is trying to prevent healthcare providers from using telehealth to meet new patients. The Delaware Board of Dietetics/Nutrition is proposing an amendment to the state’s year-old telehealth law that would limit first-time...

FTC Sides With Teladoc in Texas Telehealth Battle

by Eric Wicklund

Teladoc is gaining new support in its battle with the Texas Medical Board over proposed telehealth restrictions. The Federal Trade Commission last week sent a 44-page letter to the U.S. 5th Circuit Court that criticizes Texas medical officials...

Letter: TRICARE Bill Could ‘Federalize’ Telehealth Doctors

by Eric Wicklund

A bill to boost telehealth services for the nation’s armed forces may clash with state efforts to regulate the technology. The National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2017, now making its way through Congress, includes a telehealth benefit...

Europe Urged to Support U.S.-Based Telehealth Standards

by Eric Wicklund

Five nations and a region in Spain are looking to the U.S. for help in pushing the needle on telehealth adoption in Europe. In a three-page letter sent in June to Europe’s 28-member eHealth Network and the European Commission to promote...

HRSA Grants Target Telehealth for Veterans, Schools, Chronic Care

by Eric Wicklund

Healthcare providers in Alaska, Missouri and South Carolina are getting federal grants of almost $1 million apiece to push telehealth resources out to veterans living in rural areas. The grants are part of an ambitious effort by the Health Resources...

ATA Gives the Nation a Passing Grade for Telemental Health

by Eric Wicklund

The American Telemedicine Association is giving much of the nation a good grade for its support of telemental health. Eight states have received an A in the ATA’s latest state-by-state analysis of telehealth standards and licensure, released...

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