THE TIME IS NOW – Telemedicine on the Frontlines

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March 24, 2020
Karen Tobin
SmithAmundsen Health Care and Corporate Alert

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Recent legislation underscores the opportunity telemedicine has in our community. Now, moreMobile Health than ever there is a need for telemedicine and the services it provides. Four major segments of the population can benefit from the telemedicine initiatives:  (a) those suspected of contracting COVID-19; (b) those sick, but not due to COVID-19, however they are considered high risk (e.g. seniors, those with compromised immune systems or chronic illnesses); (c) those that are healthy and need ready access to healthcare such as pregnant mothers or new born babies; and (d) health care workers.  Also, with elective surgeries canceled and displaced healthcare workers there are many individuals well-positioned for job opportunities in telemedicine.

Some examples of recent legislation easing restrictions and opening doors:

Since State law governs whether or not a physician may practice in that state, the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact Act (IMLCA) is an attractive option for many.  The IMLCA is between 29 states, the District of Columbia and the Territory of Guam involving 43 different medical and osteopathic boards that offer an expedited way to become licensed in multiple jurisdictions.  The practitioner selects a state of residency and additional states in which he or she wishes to practice. One application is submitted. Payment is submitted with the application for the state of residency of $700.00 and additional payment is made for each additional state in which the practitioner wishes to practice.