VA goes live on 'anywhere-to-anywhere' telehealth

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The Department of Veterans Affairs recently began offering its "anywhere-to-anywhere" telehealth services, which enables VA physicians to provide veterans with virtual care regardless of state regulations, according to FCW.

VA has implemented "point-to-point" telehealth — which allows patients to access providers at any VA clinic in the VA system — at 900 sites of care in more than 50 specialties. So far, the VA is reporting a 92 percent satisfaction rate for clinical video telehealth, Neil Evans, MD, chief officer for the Office of Connected Care at the VA, told FCW.

The agency has nearly $1.3 billion available for telehealth in its 2018 budget, and officials are expecting to spend $1.2 billion in 2019 as well as $955 million to devise telehealth support services and technology.

"This is going to become healthcare," Dr. Evans told FCW. "It's going to become what we do in healthcare. We've been targeting, essentially, helping build out the technology infrastructure necessary so that every primary care provider and every mental health provider can offer a video visit, can integrate that into how they deliver care."

VA has also established 11 telehubs for mental healthcare and nine dedicated to primary care so physicians can treat patients in underserved or rural locations.

"The most important part of this is that it lets us increasingly — when it's the right thing to do clinically — move care closer to patients, deliver care in the home or in their preferred location," he told the publication.

More articles on telehealth:
U of Virginia brings Ebola treatment to Africa via telehealth
FCC votes to raise rural telehealth funding by $171M
Florida Hospital partners with telemedicine company to bring services to Puerto Rico

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