Are state Medicaid policies helping or hurting telehealth? 7 stats

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Laws governing reimbursement often stand in the way of telehealth adoption — either hospitals don't want to offer it over confusion about getting paid or patients don't want to use it over confusion as to who pays.

However, most state Medicaid programs — 49 states and the District of Columbia — reimburse live video telehealth, according to data from the Public Health Institute Center for Connected Health Policy.

Here are six other statistics gathered by the center:

1. Most states (49) and the District of Columbia have laws that define telehealth, telemedicine or both.

2. Medicaid programs in 20 states reimburse for remote patient monitoring while one state's program offers reimbursement through its Department of Aging Services.

3. Fifteen state Medicaid programs reimburse for store and forward telehealth but states rarely enable email, phone or fax as acceptable care delivery.

4. Thirty-two state Medicaid programs reimburse for a transmission or facility fee. Moreover, online questionnaires for prescriptions are not viewed as adequate either.

5. The plurality of states (38) and the District of Columbia have enacted private payer laws governing telehealth.

6. Just under half (22) of the states participate in an interstate medical licensure compact to enable clinicians deliver telehealth services across state lines.

Click here for more information on state-specific telehealth laws.

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