Telemedicine News & Updates 11-22-2017

Stay up to date on the latest and join the conversation with #Telehealth and #Telemedicine.

How Innovative Providers Overcome the Obstacles to Telehealth Success
HealthTech reports telehealth use continues to grow nationally, with more providers than ever offering options to patients that expand care beyond the walls of a single doctor’s office or hospital room. At a two-day conference in September hosted by the Transatlantic Telehealth Research Network and sponsored by CDW Healthcare, industry leaders highlighted their accomplishments to date, sharing insights with each other about new tools and trends being adopted both in the U.S. and around the world. Much of the talk among attendees, though, focused on hurdles that remain to widespread acceptance and adoption.

House Approves VETS Act, Expands Access to Telemedicine in VA System
The House approved a bill that will allow U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health professionals to practice telemedicine across state borders and care for more of America’s veterans. The bill, H.R. 2123, the Veterans E-Health and Telemedicine Support (VETS) Act of 2017, introduced by U.S. Representatives Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson (R-PA) and Julia Brownley (D-CA) allows VA doctors to practice telemedicine across state lines.

2017 Telemedicine and Digital Health Survey
According to Foley and Lardner LLP when they launched their inaugural Telemedicine and Digital Health Survey in 2014, health care executives weren’t ready to make telemedicine a significant focus of their business and patient strategies. In fact, 87 percent of respondents did not expect their patients to be using telemedicine services by this time. In just three years, expectations have been defied. Foley’s 2017 Telemedicine and Digital Health Survey reflects a surging demand for telemedicine-based offerings among providers and patients, as well as a broader acceptance of the technology by other major players in the health care industry.

Telemedicine is about to get a huge boost from Medicare and Medicaid approval
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently proposed a rule addressing Medicare payment for certain telehealth and telemedicine services. The proposal is listed in the updates to the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule for Calendar Year 2018, with a distinct focus on remote patient monitoring.

Telemedicine startup wants to make it easier to see your doctor
One Texas startup claims to be taking telemedicine a step further. Rather than connecting patients to a doctor they have never before spoken to, Austin-based Medici (@Medici_app) says it can connect patients to all of their existing doctors (including primary care physicians, pediatricians, nutritionists, mental health professionals and even veterinarians) via text or video through an app.

AHIMA releases Telemedicine Toolkit
In response to recent expansion of telemedicine with government backing AHIMA has released a Telemedicine Toolkit for providers.  Telemedicine and telehealth are increasingly being used to overcome barriers and to improve access to modern medical services, and both can be invaluable to the provider and the patient. AHIMA’s Telemedicine Toolkit provides guidance and reference for organizations that are looking to implement or expand their telemedicine / telehealth programs. The Toolkit is free to AHIMA members and cost $99.95for non-members.

FDA approves first telehealth option to program cochlear implants remotely
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved a remote feature for follow-up programming sessions for the Nucleus Cochlear Implant System through a telemedicine platform. The remote programming feature is indicated for patients who have had six months of experience with their cochlear implant sound processor and are comfortable with the programming process.

Teladoc Rides on Growing Demand for Telehealth Services
Teladoc Inc. (@Teladoc), a premier telehealth services provider, is expanding its business in the booming telehealth services industry. Increased adoption of the company’s services has led to growth in memberships and visits. This in turn has been generating substantial revenues. The company’s revenues have increased at a CAGR of 80% from 2013-2016. The trend was maintained in the first nine months of 2017.

Upcoming Events:

ATA 2018 Annual Conference & Tradeshow
What: ATA 2018 Annual Conference & Tradeshow
When: April 29 – May 1, 2018
Where: Chicago, IL
Event Hashtag: #ATA18

CMS Covered Telehealth Services
You can download the list of services payable under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule when furnished via telehealth on the CMS website.