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

  • First, Do No Digital Harm: Regulating Telemedicine

    Forbes

    Telemedicine, whereby physicians use email, phone, text, or video for prescribing and consultations, is growing rapidly. Seeking to encourage faster uptake of telemedicine, many well-intentioned parties are prodding Congress to take actions which will likely have harmful unintended consequences. So far, Congress has done well. With respect to regulating actual devices, the 21st Century Cures Act, passed by the House in 2015 with overwhelming bipartisan support, is forward thinking. If passed into law, the policies it would implement would lead to a responsible and responsive regulatory environment for mobile health apps. However, there are other areas in which Congressional action would do more harm than good. In recent testimony to the House Energy & Commerce Committee’s Subcomittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade, I encouraged Congress to First, Do No Digital Harm. Two of the most important areas of risk are federal interference in the practice of medicine and how Medicare pays for telemedicine.

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  • Florida’s Telehealth Advisory Council Appointed

    The National Law Review

    Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) announced, on July 27, 2016, the appointments of 13 representatives to the newly-created Florida Telehealth Advisory Council. The Telehealth Council was created through HB 7087, signed into law by Governor Rick Scott in March, largely as a fact-gathering step as the Legislature continues to consider a telehealth commercial insurance coverage and payment parity law. With a focus on telehealth insurance coverage (rather than practice standards), the legislation involves not only AHCA, but also the Office of Insurance Regulation (the agency with oversight over commercial health plans) in the process. According to the language of HB 7087 itself, the purpose of the Telehealth Council is to conduct a research survey and generate a report with recommendations on five specific areas:

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  • Telehealth in the Spotlight as HHS Expands Bundled Payment Models

    mHealth Intelligence

    The proposed expansion of a bundled payment program may be a sign that federal officials are placing more confidence in telehealth as a standard of care. Health and Human Services Secrtary Sylvia M. Burwell has announced that a bundled payment model for hip and knee replacements will be expanded to other surgical treatments for hip and femur fractures beyond hip replacement, and they’re launching a similar program for those undergoing treatment for a heart attack or bypass surgery. The model emphasizes telehealth as a means of supporting care once the patient has left the hospital. “Having a heart attack or undergoing heart surgery is scary and stressful for patients and their families,” Burwell said in a press release accompanying the 900-page proposal. “Today’s proposal is an important step to improving the quality of care Americans receive and driving down costs.

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