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Telemedicine and Medicare

Feds Take CMS to Task Over Improper Telehealth Reimbursements

April 16, 2018 - About three of every 10 Medicare reimbursements for telehealth in 2014-15 were made in error, according to a recent audit by federal regulators. The U.S. Health and Human Services Department of the Inspector General announced last week that an examination of 100 claims for distant-site telehealth services found 31 claims that did not meet requirements set by the Centers for Medicare &...


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Community Health Centers Use Telehealth to Boost Specialty Consults

by Eric Wicklund

A unique partnership in Washington is using telehealth to connect physicians in 20 community health centers with volunteer doctors across the country for specialist consults. Community Health Plan of Washington (CHPW), a not-for-profit plan created...

CMS Under Pressure to Cover mHealth Tools for Diabetes Management

by Eric Wicklund

As federal regulators approve more mHealth devices for diabetes care management and coordination, some in Congress are lobbying for better Medicare coverage of digital health. A bipartisan group of lawmakers this week asked the Centers for Medicare...

Telehealth, Telemedicine Reimbursement Score Big in New Budget Deal

by Eric Wicklund

Telehealth and telemedicine reimbursement scored huge successes in the budget deal signed into law by President Donald Trump, with one senator saying the law does more for Medicare coverage of telehealth than any past legislation. The two-year...

Senate Passes VETS Act, Enhancing Telehealth Access for Veterans

by Eric Wicklund

Veterans will soon be able to access healthcare no matter where they live through a telehealth connection. The Senate has unanimously passed The Veterans E-Health & Telemedicine Support (VETS) Act of 2017 (S.925), following the House’s...

MA Telehealth Bill Set For Passage; Others Aren’t So Fortunate

by Eric Wicklund

A proposed bill to boost telehealth coverage in Medicare Advantage plans is set for passage, while other bills that would loosen Medicare’s restrictions on telemedicine and telehealth – including expanding telestroke services –...

CMS Won’t Cover Telehealth in Medicare Diabetes Prevention Program

by Eric Wicklund

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has once again declined to cover virtual coaching platforms in the Medicare Diabetes Prevention Program, saying the mHealth and telehealth platform isn’t reliable enough to warrant reimbursement....

HIMSS Makes Its Pitch for Telehealth Legislation, Rural Broadband

by Eric Wicklund

One of the nation’s largest healthcare IT organizations is throwing its weight behind a telehealth bill stuck in Congress and investments in broadband infrastructure that would push telemedicine and mHealth into rural America. The Healthcare...

Texas Mulls Telemedicine Coverage for Workers’ Compensation Cases

by Eric Wicklund

Texas state officials are considering a new rule that would allow residents in workers’ compensation to use telemedicine – and allow healthcare providers to be reimbursed through Medicare. The Texas Division of Workers’ Compensation...

Telehealth Bills Get Senate Approval, Good News From CBO

by Eric Wicklund

A bill to boost telehealth coverage in Medicare Advantage plans would reduce healthcare expenditures by $80 million over the next decade, according to the Congressional Budget Office. The CBO’s cost estimate of H.R. 3727 is welcome news...

More Organizations Urge CMS to Boost Medicare Telehealth Coverage

by Eric Wicklund

Healthcare organizations and advocacy groups are ganging up on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services in a bid to compel more telehealth and telemedicine coverage. The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), American...

Telehealth Bills Targeting Stroke Care, MA Plans Show Progress

by Eric Wicklund

Two bills designed to improve telehealth and telemedicine access sailed through Congressional subcommittee reviews on Wednesday. The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health approved H.R. 1148, the Furthering Access to Stroke Telemedicine...

Congress Mulls Proposal to Boost Telehealth Coverage in MA Plans

by Eric Wicklund

The latest telehealth bill surfacing in Washington DC targets Medicare Advantage plans. H.R. 3727, introduced on Sept. 11 by US Reps. Diane Black (R-Tenn.), Mike Thompson (D-Calif.), Doris Matsui (D-Calif..) and Susan Brooks (R-Ind.), would enable...

AMGA Lobbies CMS to Give Telehealth More Medicare Opportunities

by Eric Wicklund

The American Medical Group Association is lobbying for more Medicare acceptance of telehealth, by recommending five new CPT codes and a demonstration of the value of virtual coaching platform for those with diabetes. In a letter issued on Sept....

Medicare Spending on Telehealth Increases, But Barriers Remain

by Eric Wicklund

Healthcare providers may be using more telehealth and telemedicine than ever before, but Medicare Is still a significant barrier to growth. An analysis of the Centers for Medicare and Medicare Services’ 2016 payments for telehealth and...

CMS Reimbursing For Telemedicine Even As It Scales Back Programs

by Eric Wicklund

In a bit of good news-bad news for the telemedicine industry, federal officials said they will reimburse healthcare providers for their telemedicine expenses in a bundled payment program – even as they announced plans to scale back that...

Parkinson’s Patients, Doctors Find Value in Telehealth Visits

by Eric Wicklund

A telehealth program for patients with Parkinson’s disease received high marks from both patients and doctors, according to a paper published this week in Neurology. Whether such a program can be sustained, researchers say, may depend on...

Telemedicine Could Help Medicaid Patients With Specialty Access

by Eric Wicklund

New research indicates telemedicine consults for specialty referrals could improve much-needed access for Medicaid populations. It also could offer support to an innovative telehealth platform now being used in nine states to connect doctors,...

CMS Targets Telemedicine in Study to Curb SNF Hospitalizations

by Eric Wicklund

Three skilled nursing facilities in Florida are launching a telemedicine platform in a federal study to determine the cost-effectiveness of an off-hours virtual care service. The study could help the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services...

CBO Analysis Highlights ROI Challenge Faced by Telehealth Bills

by Eric Wicklund

A Congressional Budget Office analysis of a bill that would expand telestroke services may have hit upon a common roadblock in the advancement of telehealth and telemedicine legislation: The government won’t always see a quick ROI. The...

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