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telehealth Archives - Page 3 of 6 - National Consortium of Telehealth Research Centers

BIG CHANGES IN 2019 FOR MEDICARE TELEHEALTH POLICY

By | National Telehealth Policy Resource Center Blog

Last week CMS released its finalized Calendar Year (CY) 2019 Physician Fee Schedule containing momentous changes for Medicare, aiming to modernize the healthcare system and help “restore the doctor-patient relationship” by reducing administrative burden. Among the changes, the proposed rule not only expands telehealth reimbursement, but communicates a new interpretation by CMS of the applicability of their statutory requirements for reimbursement of telehealth. Telehealth-delivered services under Medicare is limited in statute by 1834(m) of the Social Security Act which limits the use of telehealth to certain services, providers, technology (mainly live video) and patient locations (needing to be in certain types of healthcare facilities in rural areas). CMS, in their rule, expresses concern that these requirements may be limiting the coding for new kinds of services that utilize communication technology.

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Using Telemedicine to Combat the Opioid Epidemic

By | Recent Telehealth News

Article Author: ADM Brett P. Giroir

Source: Health IT Buzz

Combatting the opioid crisis is a top priority for the Trump Administration and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).  We are making progress. Just last week we released the 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH)data, which showed significantly more people received treatment for substance use disorder in 2017 than in 2016; this was especially true for those with heroin-related opioid use disorders.  In addition, the number of people who initiated use of heroin in 2017 was less than half of the number in 2016.

While these are promising data, we know there is still much more work to be done, especially in rural areas that have been hard hit by the opioid epidemic.  This is particularly true in some rural and remote areas of the country where patients with opioid use disorder (OUD must travel long distances to receive treatment; and there are too few clinicians available to provide medication-assisted treatment (MAT)- an essential component in the treatment of OUD.

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California Mulls Guidelines for School Telemental Health Programs

By | Recent Telehealth News

Article Author: Eric Wicklund

Source: mHealth Intelligence

California lawmakers are pushing a bill to develop a statewide policy for telehealth and telemedicine that will give students remote access to mental health services.

AB 2315, which is now headed to Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk, calls on the California Department of Education and Department of Health Care Services to develop connected care guidelines within two years for the state’s public schools, including charter schools.

The bill passed unanimously in both the Senate and State Assembly.

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Telemedicine Still Tops Health Execs’ Interests, With AI Rising

By | Recent Telehealth News

Article Author: Eric Wicklund

Source: mHealth Intelligence

Healthcare executives are still seeing a bright future for telehealth and telemedicine, with artificial intelligence quickly moving up the list of hot topics.

A survey of roughly 100 health industry executives by Utah-based Reaction Data found that 29 percent see telemedicine as having the biggest impact on healthcare. Another 20 percent picked AI technology, while 11 percent selected mobile data.

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CMS Proposes to Expand Telehealth Reimbursement Among Some ACOs

By | National Telehealth Policy Resource Center Blog

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has released a proposed rule to redesign participation options under the Medicare Shared Savings Program to encourage Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) to transition into two-sided models designed to increase savings for the Trust Funds and mitigate losses, reduce gaming opportunities and promote regulatory flexibility and free market principles. The proposal includes a new section of the Shared Savings Program regarding payment for telehealth services provided in accordance with 1899(l) of the Social Security Act, as added by the Bipartisan Budget Act, which allows ACOs to expand the use of telehealth services by including the home as an originating site and removing geographic limitations. CMS would therefore treat a beneficiary’s home as an originating site and would not apply originating site restrictions for telehealth services provided by a physician or practitioner in an applicable ACO. The home would not be eligible for a facility fee.

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