Center for Connected Health Policy, December 19, 2017
It was an active year for state telehealth legislation in 2017. Among 34 states and DC, 62 legislative bills passed in 2017, up from 48 bills in 2016. Unlike past years, where much legislation focused on enacting new telehealth private payer bills, the majority of legislation was focused on modifying already existing Medicaid and private payers reimbursement laws or policy. Additionally, establishing board practice standards and requirements around the physician-patient relationship and prescribing continued to grow. Other noteworthy trends included the enactment of the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact, and two states enacted the Interjurisdictional Psychology Compact. Emerging areas of interest was the ability to incorporate telehealth into calculations for network adequacy, restrictions on insurance companies limiting their reimbursement to a specific technology, and the allowance to prescribe controlled substances via telehealth under specific circumstances and within federal limits.