Fla. Legislature Ends Session Without Advancing Telehealth Measures

May 6, 2014 in News

On Friday, Florida’s legislative session ended without the state Senate passing major health care legislation (HB 7113) that included some telemedicine provisions, WFSU reports (Hatter, WFSU, 5/2).

Under a provision added by the Florida House, the bill would have allowed doctors to treat Florida residents using telehealth without having a medical license from the state. The Florida Medical Association opposes the telehealth proposal.

State senators stripped the bill of the telemedicine provision after lawmakers argued that it would put patients’ safety at risk and leave them with no way to seek recourse for malpractice (AP/Modern Healthcare, 5/3).

Meanwhile, the state Senate also failed to advance a separate telehealth-related bill (SB 1646) (Tampa Bay Times, 5/3). That bill would have:

Authorized physicians licensed in other states to meet alternative requirements for practicing in Florida using telehealth;

  • Created telehealth standards;
  • Authorized the use of telemedicine to treat eye problems; and
  • Prohibited a Medicaid managed care plan from using non-physician telemedicine providers (Florida House website, 5/5).
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