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

  • Study: States’ Private Payer Laws Are Harming Telehealth Growth

    mHealth Intelligence

    Two-thirds of the states in the US may have laws to promote telehealth and telemedicine coverage by private payers, but many of those laws are weakly written, giving payers too much discretion to set their own ground rules and turning providers away from those services.  That’s the conclusion of a study by the Center for Connected Health Policy, commissioned by the Reforming States Group and supported by the Milbank Memorial Fund. It paints the picture of a disjointed and vague set of rules governing private payers that are doing more to impede telehealth than promote it.  “This study makes clear there is broad misconception that because private payer laws are in place in many states around the country, telehealth is achieving its promise of parity of benefits and payment with in-person care,” the 34-page report, written by policy advisor Mei Wa Kwong and program associates Christine Y. Calouro and Laura M. Nassen, says. “The reality is that lack of clarity and clauses that impede the expansion of telehealth-delivered services weaken many of these laws.”  

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  • Hurricanes Harvey and Irma Spotlight Value of Telehealth as New House Bill Gains Ground

    Healthcare IT News

    As Houston was inundated and Key West was thrashed with 130-mph winds, several vendors and providers offered free telehealth services to residents displaced by hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Doctor On Demand and EpicMD both made their services available to regions of Texas and Florida for a limited time, as did LiveHealth Online, which offers video-based consultations physicians and psychologists. Delaware-based Nemours, which operates pediatric specialty clinics in Florida, offered free remote consults to children affected by Irma. A lot of people took advantage of those opportunities. For instance, nearly 3,000 people over three days availed themselves of a telehealth program offered for free by another area provider, Florida Hospital, according to the Orlando Sentinel. And at Nemours, downloads of its CareConnect telemed app increased by more than 550 percent. 

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  • 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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