State Telehealth Laws and Reimbursement Policies Report

CCHP’s comprehensive assessment and compendium of state Medicaid telehealth policies and laws covers all fifty states and the District of Columbia.

CCHP’s annual State Telehealth Laws and Reimbursement Policies report offers the nation’s most current summary guide of Medicaid provider manuals, applicable state laws, and telehealth-related regulations for all fifty states and the District of Columbia. This report serves as a vital resource for policymakers, health care professionals, and health advocates on how each state defines, governs, and regulates technology-enabled health care, noting policy trends across eleven key categories.

Fifty States, Fifty Approaches

Remarkably, no two states are alike in how telehealth is treated despite some similarities in the language used. For example, some states have incorporated telehealth-related policies into law, while other states address issues in their Medicaid program guidelines. In some cases, CCHP discovered policy inconsistencies within a single state. This variability creates a confusing environment for those who use (or intend to use) telehealth, especially health systems that provide health care services in several states. 

Recent Findings

As of August 2016:

  • 48 state Medicaid programs and DC are now reimbursing for live video telehealth.
  • 12 state Medicaid programs offer some reimbursement for store-and-forward, not counting states that only reimbursed for tele-radiology. (two policies are not yet effective)
  • 19 state Medicaid programs reimburse for remote patient monitoring. Three policies go into effect at a later date.
  • 30 state Medicaid programs offer a transmission or facility fee when telehealth is used.
  • 29 states require a telehealth specific informed consent be obtained from the patient in their statute, administrative code and/or Medicaid policies.
  • 34 states and DC now have active laws that govern private payer telehealth reimbursement policies.  Two of the policies are not yet effective.
  • 9 states have some form of geographic requirement, restricting telehealth reimbursement to rural or underserved areas, or require a certain amount of distance between an originating and distant site.
  • 25 states limit reimbursement to a specific list of facilities, with 10 adding such a list to their policy in the past nine months.
  • 9 state medical boards issue licenses related to telehealth, while 17 states have adopted the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact, which is an expedited licensure process. 

CCHP has created an easy to read fact sheet and infographic summarizing these most recent findings. They are both available for download in the fact sheet section of CCHP's website.

Constantly Updating Policies

Due to the dynamic nature of state telehealth policy, CCHP offers an interactive policy map with the most recent telehealth-related policy information. This information is updated quarterly, and the PDF report is updated at least annually.