November Regulatory Update – This Month in Telehealth

Federal and Medicare

Telemedicine Largely Left Out of MACRA (Politico)

Telemedicine advocates in Washington are “disappointed” that Friday’s MACRA rule largely ignores their technology. But they’re using it as a reason to support congressional action to give Medicare greater freedom to pay for telemedicine.

Read more here

Payers urge CBO to Give Telemedicine a Fair Shake (mHealth Intelligence)

Almost a dozen of the nation’s largest health plans say telemedicine and telehealth should play a more important role in the Congressional Budget Office’s review of Medicare bills.

Read more here


What’s Happening at the State Level?


For Second Time, Medical Board OKs Telemedicine Rule (Arkansas News)

The Arkansas State Medical Board voted Thursday to approve a proposed regulation concerning the online transferal of patients’ medical records after two legislative panels previously declined to review the rule.

Read more here



Mississippi’s Outdated Health are Policies Need an Update (Sun Herald)

Considering nearly 60 percent of Mississippians live in primary care shortage areas, telemedicine is a boon for our state.

Read more here


New Jersey

NJ Lawmakers Consider Bill to Regulate Telemedicine (NJTV News)

New Jersey legislators are considering a bill to regulate telemedicine: the use of videoconferencing between a medical professional and patient.

Read more here.

Note: The NJ Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee will meet on Thursday, November 3, 2016 at 1:00 PM EST in Committee Room 4, 1st Floor, State House Annex, Trenton, NJ to consider the telemedicine bill S 291.

Read SB 291 here

If unable to attend in person, you can watch live coverage of the committee hearing here.



Topper’s Telemedicine Bill Awaiting Pa. Governor’s Signature (HM Media)

Pennsylvania state Rep. Jesse Topper said this week that his bill related to telemedicine was approved by the Pennsylvania Senate and is heading to Gov. Tom Wolf’s desk on its way to becoming law.

Read more here

Read HB 1619 here



Texas Withdraws Teladoc Antitrust Lawsuit Appeal Texas (Healthcare Dive)

Texas and the state’s medical board have dropped their appeal of a lower court’s refusal to dismiss Teladoc’s antitrust lawsuit challenging a restrictive telemedicine rule.

Read more here


All Things Parity

State Bill Number Status Issue
Massachusetts HB 4442 (formerly HB 267) Enacted Would allow access to telemedicine services by allowing certain clinicians to be credentialed and allowing for coverage of such services by all payers and the Medicaid program.

***Information Gathered from ATA Monthly Update Webinar


Interstate Licensure Compact Updates…

National Reciprocity
Department of Defense
Department of veterans affairs (S2170 and HR 2516)
Medicare (S 1778 and HR 3081)
Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) 18 states Alabama, Arizona, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Pennsylvania, Nevada, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Utah, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming and Colorado
Mutual Recognition
National Council for State Boards of Nursing (Enhanced NLC and APRN) Arizona, Florida, Idaho, Missouri, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wyoming
Association for State and Provincial Psychology Boards (PSYPACT) Needs 7 states: Arizona

***Information Gathered from ATA Monthly Update Webinar

Federation of State Medical Boards Applauds Enactment of Interstate Medical Licensure Compact in Pennsylvania (FSMB)

Read more here


Momentum Grows for Telehealth Licensing Compacts (mHealth Intelligence)

Read more here


In Other News…

Most Employers Paying for Doctor Telemedicine Visits (Forbes)

Read more here


NAMI to Focus on Heroin and Opioid Use (The Block Island Times)

Read more here

Read HB 7160B here (goes into effect Jan 1, 2018)


Untreated Mental Health Conditions: the Staggering Costs (Benefits pro)

Read more here


Telehealth Reimbursement and Its Interstate Licensure Problem (mHealth Intelligence)

Read more here



Navigating the Buzz Words of Telehealth (TelecomReseller)

Read more here


9 Roadblocks to Telemedicine from the Physician & Patient Perspective (Beckersspine)

Read more here


Strong Patient Demand for Telehealth Motivated by Convenience (mHealth Intelligence)

Read more here

See the survey results here


“GOTCHA” of the Month…..

What is MACRA

MACRA stands for Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA)

More than a year has passed since Congress voted to enact the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 and the Department of Health & Human Services issued its notice of proposed rulemaking for MACRA implementation.  The finalized program was released by HHS on October 14th after a lengthy rulemaking and comment period.

At its most basic, MACRA repeals the sustainable growth rate — a series of Congressional fixes responsible for adjusting Medicare expenditures and provider reimbursement — and authorizes HHS to implement value-based initiatives aimed at improving care access for Medicare and CHIP beneficiaries. But MACRA is much more than that.

Please see the following resources to dig deeper into the details:


Every month we aim to feature a new “Gotcha of the Month” – If you have a regulatory “gotcha” or question that you want us to pay special attention to, email and your topic could be featured next month!

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