The Center for Connected Health Policy (CCHP) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization working to maximize telehealth’s ability to improve health outcomes, care delivery, and cost effectiveness.

CCHP Newsroom

  • HIT Coalition Pushes CMS to Revamp Telehealth Policies

    HealthData Management

    Health IT Now, a coalition of patient groups, providers, employers and insurers, in large part agrees with new IT policies included in a recently issued proposed rule making changes to payment policies under the physician fee schedule for Calendar Year 2018.  However, the organization also has some serious concerns, particularly regarding telehealth policy, which it detailed in a comment letter sent to CMS Administrator Seema Verma.  The group sees the IT measures as fostering improved patient safety and outcomes by giving providers, patients and caregivers tools that will better enable them to manage health and wellness.  For example, the coalition strongly backs proposed additions to covered telehealth services and is encouraging CMS to go further by offering Medicare reimbursement for physical, occupational and speech-language therapy, while also adding diabetes educators to the list of providers eligible to bill for telehealth services.  

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  • Texas Medical Board Releases Telemedicine Rules

    Modern Healthcare

    The Texas Medical Board on Friday released revised rules that adjust how telemedicine providers in the state—the last large market without rules to regulate video doctor consultations—are allowed to treat patients. The proposed rules do away with the provisions that a "patient site presenter" must be available for patients being treated for new conditions at medical sites and that offsite, providers see patients in the flesh before providing for them remotely. Instead, the rules stipulate that a health professional "must establish a practitioner-patient relationship," but they do not specify how such a relationship be formed, opening up the possibility for such a relationship to be completely virtual. These changes are in line with the state law passed in May that allows providers to care for patients virtually without having in-person meetings first—a response to an issue that first arose prominently when the Texas Medical Board told Teladoc in 2011 that it couldn't provide telemedicine services without preliminary in-person visits. The new rules could affect up to 28 million patients in the state, about 3 million of whom live in rural areas.

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  • Telemedicine Saves Patients Time and Money, Study Shows

    Fierce Healthcare

    A new study adds to mounting evidence that telemedicine can save patients two things they value most: time and money.  Patients and family members saved an average of $50 in travel costs and recouped just under an hour in time by using telehealth technology for sports medicine appointments, according to a study by Nemours Children’s Health System presented at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference.  The health system saw some moderate savings as well. The telehealth appointments cost approximately $24 less per patient.  “We know that telemedicine is often looked to for common childhood ailments, like cold and flu, or skin rashes. But we wanted to look at how telemedicine could benefit patients within a particular specialty such as sports medicine,” Alfred Atanda Jr., MD., an orthopedic surgeon at Nemours that led the study said in a release.

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