Highmark launches telehealth program for opioid addiction treatment

Highmark West Virginia on Feb. 20 announced a new initiative to provide telemedicine-based treatment and services to members dealing with opioid and other addictions, according to News and Sentinel.

The insurance provider is teaming up with telehealth company Bright Heart Health, which offers virtual and walk-in clinic services, to offer on-demand consultations with physicians, therapists, case managers and wellness coaches via smartphone, tablet or computer.  

The 24/7 virtual care services aim to alleviate barriers, such as distance and transportation, that Highmark West Virginia members may face when seeking addiction care.

"We're not treating people with simple issues," said Jon Ciampi, CEO of Bright Heart Health, according to the report. "It's the idea of fitting a service around a patient."

To ensure patient privacy, data transmitted during the virtual care process is encrypted so it won't remain on the device used for the consultation after the appointment ends, Mr. Ciampi said.

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