Groups Urge CMS To Support Greater Use of Telehealth
November 7, 2014 in News
This week, Health IT Now and the Telecommunications Industry Association submitted comments to CMS’ Center for Medicare Medicaid Innovation urging the agency to increase use of telehealth, FierceHealthIT reports (Bowman, FierceHealthIT, 11/6).
Specifically, the RFI requests insights on products available to Medicaid and Medicare beneficiaries, including:
- Medicaid managed care plans;
- Medigap and Retiree Supplemental health plans;
- Medicare Advantage and Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug plans; and
- Stand-alone Medicare Prescription Drug Plans (CMMI RFI, 10/2).
Health IT Now Comments
Health IT Now in its comments urged CMS to create a model telehealth program comparable to one used by the Department of Veterans Affairs that would “create a continuum of care that is essential to patient care.” The model could include clinical video equipment, home telehealth services and store-and-forward technologies, the group said (FierceHealthIT, 11/6).
The group noted, “The use of technology allows both providers and patients to remain engaged and informed about the condition or conditions being treated. It also allows for multiple providers to exchange data about a patient’s condition and course of treatment” (Health IT Now comments, 11/5).
Meanwhile, TIA in comments said CMS should use remote patient monitoring for patients with conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and diabetes. In addition, the group urged CMS to make platform neutrality and technology neutrality priorities in CMMI programs (FierceHealthIT, 11/6).
TIA wrote, “CMMI programs should set objectives, but avoid dictating how those objectives are met,” adding, “Whether technologies that utilize or offer real-time interactive audio or video telecommunications, asynchronous store-and-forward technologies or remote monitoring services, the focus should be on the patient objectives and outcomes as opposed to the modality” (TIA release, 11/3).