Dr. Jim Stimpson, the associate dean for academic affairs and professor at the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy, along with colleagues studied evaluated telehealth reimbursement policies. The findings were published in Telemedicine Journal and E-health.
[Photo: Dr. Jim Stimpson]
The research team described the creation of a legal mapping database of state-level policies related to telehealth reimbursement of healthcare services and presents the trends and characteristics of these policies.
The team used information provided by the Center for Connected Health Policy to identify statewide laws and regulations regarding telehealth reimbursement. Other information was retrieved by using: (1) LexisNexis database, (2) Westlaw database, and (3) retrieval from legislative websites, historical documents, and contacting state officials. They examined policies for live video, store-and-forward, and remote patient monitoring.
In the United States, there are 24 states with policies regarding reimbursement for live video transmission. Fourteen states have store-and-forward policies, and six states have remote patient monitoring-related policies. Mississippi is the only state that requires reimbursement for all three types of telehealth transmission modes. Most states (47 states) have Medicaid policies regarding live video transmission, followed by 37 states for store-and-forward and 20 states for remote patient monitoring. Only 13 states require that live video will be reimbursed “consistent with” or at the “same rate” as in-person services in their Medicaid program.
The authors concluded that there are no widely accepted telehealth reimbursement policies across states. There are diverse restrictions and requirements that present complexities in policy evaluation and in determining policy effectiveness across states.