Health IT coalition supports bill to expand telehealth for veterans

Health IT Now, a coalition of patient groups, provider organizations, health payers and health IT companies, assembled 24 other organizations to write a letter of support Sept. 26 for a bill that would expand veterans' access to telehealth services.

The Veterans E-Health and Telemedicine Support Act of 2017 (S.925) would remove barriers to telehealth for veterans by allowing Department of Veteran Affairs providers to practice telehealth across state lines.

"Under current law, the VA can only waive state provider licensing requirements if both the physician and patient are located in a federally owned facility. Because a significant number of veterans live in rural areas, this requirement places a burden on veterans, who often must travel to federal facilities to receive care from a VA provider located in another state," the organizations wrote in a letter to the bill's sponsors — Reps. Glenn Thompson, R-Pa., and Julia Brownley, D-Calif., and Sens. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, and Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii.

"It is unacceptable that our veterans must overcome artificial barriers when attempting to access healthcare, and we commend you for your work to remove these restrictions," they added.

More articles on telehealth: 

Senate passes Medicare telehealth expansion bill, CHRONIC Care Act

Baptist Health Corbin debuts teleICU services

Telemedicine: A force multiplier in fighting the opioid epidemic

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