“Questions about the future of telehealth regulations have endured ever since the federal government opted to relax some of them during the COVID-19 pandemic. “The telehealth cliff is looming, casting much uncertainty and concern for the health and safety of Medicare beneficiaries, and the sustainability of our already overburdened healthcare system”, said Ann Mond Johnson, CEO of the American Telemedicine Association.
“By ensuring Medicare beneficiaries do not lose access to telehealth after the COVID-19 public health emergency ends, the CONNECT At would protect seniors from the telehealth cliff,” she said. The CONNECT Act would aim to answer at least some of those questions, at least where Medicare is concerned. The 2021 version of the legislation would:
– Permanently remove all geographic restrictions on telehealth services and expand originating sites to include the home and other sites
– Allow health centers and rural health clinics to provide telehealth services
– Provide the Secretary of Health and Human Services with the permanent authority to waive telehealth restrictions
– Allow for the waiver of telehealth restrictions during public health emergencies
– Require a study to learn more about how telehealth has been used during the current COVID-19 pandemic
Advocates cheered the CONNECT for Health Act’s reintroduction, calling it a major move toward expansion of access to virtual services. This isn’t the first time a version of the CONNECT Act has been introduced… some of the original provisions have been enacted into law or adopted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.”– “CONNECT for Health Act Reintroduced, Would Expand Telehealth Access” – Kat Jercich April 30, 2021
To read more about the CONNECT Act, please click the link below.
Stay well, mask up indoors, and stay tuned!