February 05, 2016
On Wednesday, Senate and House lawmakers introduced the Creating Opportunities Now for Necessary and Effective Care Technologies (CONNECT) for Health Act (S. 2484 in the Senate and H.R. 4442 in the House), bipartisan legislation that would expand Medicare reimbursement of telehealth consultations and remote patient monitoring (“RPM”) with fewer restrictions from current geographic and service location requirements. Specifically, the bill focuses on increasing access and lowering costs by establishing telehealth and RPM basic benefits in the Medicare Advantage program and increasing telemedicine and RPM services in rural health clinics and community health centers. The bill also allows for the use of RPM for certain patients with chronic conditions and expands the originating sites for the use of telehealth services to telestroke evaluation and management sites.
Last month, an independent consulting firm released an analysis of the cost savings the proposed policy changes would generate estimating a savings of $1.8 billion in federal funds over 10 years.
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