VMS recently conducted a survey in order to assess how telehealth is working for practices, what equipment or policies would make this delivery method more successful and whether patients need assistance in achieving video capability. Thank you to all the respondents and to the participants who agreed to share their success stories in order for us to help advocate for continued coverage and full reimbursement of telehealth services on the state and federal level. Click for the VMS Telehealth Survey results.
This week, the Senate and House Health Care Committees held a joint hearing and discussion this morning regarding continuing coverage for audio-only telehealth services as well as helping address broadband and technological access issues to telehealth services. The Committees are considering two bills: One draft bill (draft request 20-0981) would continue current coverage of audio-only services while a workgroup considers what permanent coverage should look like after the COVID 19 state of emergency ends. VMS would be a member of this workgroup. This bill will likely also extend other provisions of Act 91, such as licensing flexibilities and insurance coverage requirements for COVID testing, that are intended to help respond to immediate COVID 19 needs. A second bill (currently unnumbered) would direct the Vermont Program for Quality in Health Care (VPQHC) to work with its Statewide Telehealth Workgroup, the Department of Public Service and other stakeholders to assess areas of the state that have limited broadband and opportunities for use federal funds to increase Vermonter’s access to telehealth services.
Click for the VMS Telehealth Survey results.