Teladoc dismisses Texas lawsuit

Teladoc dismissed a longstanding lawsuit in Texas Friday involving telemedicine rights and services in the state.

In 2011, the Texas Medical Board wrote Teladoc a letter saying the company's practices violated a rule in the Texas Administrative Code requiring physicians who prescribe any "dangerous" drugs or controlled substances to first establish "a proper professional relationship with the patient," which includes a face-to-face physical examination. TMB threatened disciplinary action against physicians participating in Teladoc's services. Teladoc then sued TMB, alleging the "rule" TMB said Teladoc was violating can't be considered as such because the letter TMB sent went beyond stating existing rules or statutes and included disciplinary actions. A judge ruled in favor of Teladoc.

After TMB issued an emergency medicine rule limiting the use of telephones in medicine, Teladoc filed a separate lawsuit in January 2015 claiming TMB's emergency rule violates the Texas Administrative Practice Act, which says emergency rules are only permitted if there is "imminent peril to the public health, safety or welfare."

Due to a change in Texas' telemedicine legislation in May, Teladoc was able to expand its offerings. The company voluntarily dismissed its lawsuit Dec. 1.

"As we have said throughout this process, Teladoc remains steadfast in our commitment to continue to champion and transform access to high-quality healthcare," reads a statement on the company's website. "Today we could not be happier with the outcome, and the alignment of the legislators and medical regulators on behalf of the people of Texas."

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