ATA Supports Telehealth Enhancement Act to Improve Telehealth Coverage

WASHINGTON – October 24, 2013 – The American Telemedicine Association (ATA) strongly supports the Telehealth Enhancement Act, H.R. 3306, introduced by Reps. Gregg Harper (R-MS), Mike Thompson (D-CA), Devin Nunes (R-CA) and Peter Welch (D-VT).  This bipartisan Congressional proposal calls for the adoption of payment innovations to include telehealth and make other incremental improvements to existing telehealth coverage.

"We appreciate the representatives’ leadership to craft a budget-sensitive package with strategic measures that will improve healthcare accessibility and affordability," said Jonathan Linkous, chief executive officer of ATA.  "These provisions are critical to the future of healthcare in the U.S. in that they will save Medicare and Medicaid dollars, and improve lives.”

Provisions in the bill that are expected to save health funds would:

1. Add incentive for fewer Medicare hospital readmissions
2. Create new Medicaid optional package for high-risk pregnancy and birth networks
3. Cover telehealth services under Medicare payment bundles for post-acute care
4. Allow Medicare accountable care organizations (ACOs) to use telehealth like Medicare managed care plans
5. Facilitate Medicare home-based kidney dialysis

For more information on federal and state telehealth policy,visit http://www.americantelemed.org/get-involved/public-policy-advocacy/policy-issues. 

About the American Telemedicine Association
The American Telemedicine Association is the leading international resource and advocate promoting the use of advanced remote medical technologies. ATA and its diverse membership work to fully integrate telemedicine into healthcare systems to improve quality, equity and affordability of healthcare throughout the world. Established in 1993, ATA is headquartered in Washington, DC. For more information visit www.americantelemed.org.