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telehealth Archives - Page 4 of 8 - National Consortium of Telehealth Research Centers

2018 IN REVIEW: STATE & FEDERAL TELEHEALTH POLICY

By | Center for Connected Health Policy

Original Source: Center for Connected Health Policy

It was an active year for state telehealth legislation in 2018.  Among 39 states and DC, 65 legislative bills passed in the 2018 legislative session, up slightly from 62 bills in 2017.  Additionally, 49 telehealth related regulations were finalized in 38 states related to telehealth.  The enacted legislation this year focused mainly on broadening Medicaid policy, establishing regulatory requirements and enacting interstate licensure compacts.  In general there has been a slowing of enacted legislation addressing private payer reimbursement of telehealth.  Adopted regulation focused on telehealth practice standards by professional boards.

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Continued Telehealth Developments as 2018 Comes to a Close

By | Center for Connected Health Policy

Original Source: Center for Connected Health Policy

Medicare Report Reveals Medicare Telehealth Utilization, Barriers & Opportunities
In response to a requirement in the 21st Century Cures Act to issue a report on telehealth use, barriers and opportunities in Medicare, CMS released an informational report on November 15th addressing telehealth utilization, activities by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, and opportunities and barriers to the use of telehealth within Medicare.  Utilizing data from Medicare fee-for-service between 2014 and 2016, the report revealed that although overall use of telehealth has increased, the rate of adoption is still limited.  Mental health and therapy sessions were the most common service types, with beneficiaries with a mental health diagnosis among the highest utilizers of telehealth delivered services.  Services targeting chronic diseases and behavior modification (such as smoking cessation) were also among the more popular telehealth delivered services.  The analysis determined that there are 19 additional high volume services for outpatient and inpatient visits and therapy that are either similar to those that are already on Medicare’s list or that are typically provided in settings that do not meet Medicare’s originating site requirements that would be suitable for telehealth delivery.  CMS concludes that restrictions on eligible telehealth originating sites is the greatest barrier preventing the expansion for telehealth within Medicare.

For more details and further statistics on telehealth in Medicare,
see the full report.

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BIG CHANGES IN 2019 FOR MEDICARE TELEHEALTH POLICY

By | Center for Connected Health Policy

Original Source: Center for Connected Health Policy

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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