CCHP monitors both state and federal legislation, identifies barriers to telehealth use, and provides policy technical assistance to the regional telehealth resource centers and state and federal policymakers. As the federally designated National Telehealth Policy Resource Center (NTRCP), CCHP provides policy technical assistance, legislative tracking, and policy analyses to twelve regional telehealth policy resource centers (TRCs) nationwide.

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CCHP Staff

Mei Wa Kwong, J.D.
Executive Director

Mei Wa Kwong joined CCHP in March 2010, where she works on public policy issues as they impact telehealth on the state and federal level.  She is also the project director for the National Telehealth Policy Resource Center.

For CCHP, Ms. Kwong manages projects, provides policy technical assistance to state and federal lawmakers, industry members, providers, consumers and others, oversees the CCHP policy staff and works closely with CCHP’s partners and consultants.  She has authored several articles published in peer review journals and has presented at national conferences.

Prior to joining CCHP, Ms. Kwong was a public policy analyst for Children’s Home Society of California, working on child care and early education issues on the state and federal levels. She also worked extensively with the Child Development Policy Institute, a statewide public policy organization, and was recognized by them in 2004 for her work in the early care and education field.  She was also at the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts in Washington, DC working on federal tax issues, and administered the association’s political action committee. Ms. Kwong holds a BA in International Affairs from George Washington University, and a JD from George Washington University Law School.

January Newsletter

By | Center for Connected Health Policy
Orignal source: Center for Connected Health Policy
NICHM Funds CCHP Policy Research on FQHCs Utilizing Telehealth for Opioid Use Disorder Services
The Center for Connected Health Policy (CCHP) has received funding from the National Institute for Health Care Management Foundation (NIHCM) to conduct research on policy changes that need to be made in order for federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) to utilize telehealth to address the opioid crisis. With opioid overdose being classified by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as a nationwide epidemic, and FQHCs often serving as the first line of defense in rural and underserved communities, many clinics are looking to telehealth to help address opioid use disorders (OUD) and deliver Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT), a best practice treatment for opioid addiction which combines medication and behavioral therapy.  However, many FQHCs find themselves restricted from establishing a telehealth program to treat OUD given an array of unique and complex policy barriers, both on the federal and state policy levels.  Through this project, CCHP will chronicle the policy obstacles FQHCs face in implementing a telehealth MAT program in 5 to 7 states where the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has awarded grants to address the OUD crisis and which have high incidents of OUD.  The findings will be disseminated through an issue brief which will also provide insight for both FQHCs and policy makers into how to overcome policy barriers in order to implement a sustainable and innovative OUD program utilizing telehealth.

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CCHP Releases CMS Medicare Telehealth Information Resource Compilation

By | Center for Connected Health Policy

Original Source: Center for Connected Health Policy

 

The Center for Connected Health Policy (CCHP) has gathered telehealth related information and guidance issued by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and combined the materials into a single resource compilation. Medicare telehealth policy is generally detailed in the Medicare Learning Network (MLN)’s Booklet on Telehealth Services issued at the beginning of each year. However, occasionally questions are raised regarding telehealth reimbursement that are not addressed in the Booklet, or CMS issues supplemental MLN documents, Medicare manual sections or Frequently Asked Question (FAQ) documents to address specific topic areas that require specialized direction (such as FQHC/RHC billing). The purpose of CCHP’s compilation is to consolidate all of this information into one reference resource.

CMS often responds to questions emailed to them about their telehealth policy through an official letter sent directly to the entity/person that raised the question. CCHP has gathered the letters that address telehealth-specific questions submitted to CMS by staff from the fourteen Telehealth Resource Centers in this Compilation. The general topic areas included in the compilation comprise questions around advanced beneficiary notice (ABN), and when it is required; the CMS-1500 Billing Form and what address to use in certain areas of the form; and questions about when certain codes are billable given specific circumstances and models of care. A simplified FAQ summarizing the content of the letters has been provided in the document as a quick reference, followed by the actual letters.

Besides the Telehealth Booklet and letters mentioned above, Medicare also has issued a number of additional MLN and Manual guidance to address specific topics not covered in the general Telehealth booklet, such as how federally qualified health centers and rural health centers should bill for telehealth services. Also, because communication technology based services and chronic care management does not fall under the definition of telehealth in Medicare, there are also separate guidance documents on these topics as well, which are included in CCHP’s compilation. A link to Medicare’s telehealth geographic analyzer is also included. This is a tool that allows users to input an address to determine if a particular site qualifies under Medicare’s rural requirement (either a non-Metropolitan Statistical Area or rural Health Professional Shortage Area) for telehealth reimbursement.

For more information, download CCHP’s full compilation of CMS telehealth resources, and if you are a recipient of one of the telehealth-related letters described above, please feel free to forward it  to CCHP who will include it in future versions of this resource.  Email your letters to christinec@cchpca.org 

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