Re: Federation of State Medical Boards is scheduled to vote on a new telehealth proposal clarifying that, for purposes of state regulation, care occurs where the patient, not the physician, is located
@daburt00: The rules for telehealth vary from state to state and are not federally mandated, which is where some of the confusion comes in. Insurers have, for the most part, become much more flexible and agreeable to paying for telehealth services; they are often much more cost-effective in several ways, benefiting patient and provider -- and payer. Some states, however, have a lot of strings surrounding telehealth that make it much more challenging for providers to practice. While hospitals and doctors may, perhaps, be able to practice telehealth in those states, it's challenging (if not impossible) for telehealth-only organizations to operate, as discussed in this story and subsequent comments.
Of course, that may or may not be a good thing, depending on your perspective. We're seeing more organizations offering telehealth services -- some are 100% phone-based, others include a video option (like the one in this story) -- as a standalone business. These compabnies hope clarification allows them to more easily expand into states that currently have cloudiness surrounding their rules.