CMS aims to expand telehealth, discuss payment reform next year, Verma says

CMS Administrator Seema Verma touted the gains in virtual care and digital health her agency has made during the pandemic and said she plans to increase the number of services available via telehealth during an interview with Business Insider.

"We have to continue to increase the number of services available through telehealth, and I think you'll see in next year's rulemaking that we'll be contemplating how these services should be reimbursed," she said.

Ms. Verma also said payment reform has to be part of the conversation toward making digital health more universally available.

"When providers are more in control, then they're able to leverage better technology," she said. "Part of the push to digital health is pushing more value-based care. That's something we've seen has bipartisan support. So we're going to continue to push it."

She said the nation is at a turning point for healthcare delivery as more patients, providers and payers turned to telehealth during the COVID-19 pandemic. Telehealth expanded access to mental health services, and while other services have begun to move back to in-person care, many still prefer telehealth for mental health services.

More articles on telehealth:
The 146 telehealth services Medicare is covering during the pandemic
How to create successful telehealth programs: 2 IT experts weigh in
Amazon teams up with 2 Ohio health organizations on telemedicine offering

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