ATA: Removing Medicare Restrictions on Telemedicine Is Key for Accountable Care

June 24, 2011
The American Telemedicine Association (ATA) has called on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to use its authority to waive the

The American Telemedicine Association (ATA) has called on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to use its authority to waive the restriction-riddled Medicare telemedicine statute for the new Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs).

Since CMS has the power to waive Medicare statutory provisions “as may be necessary to carry out” the ACO provisions, in formal comments to CMS today ATA proposed five specific changes for the final rules to allow:
1. Medical videoconferencing for the 35 million beneficiaries who live in metropolitan areas
2. Store-and-forward of medical images for the 43 million beneficiaries who don’t live in Alaska or Hawaii
3. Physicians to judge the appropriate ACO use of telemedicine for otherwise covered services
4. Home-based medical videoconferencing
5. Otherwise covered therapy services to be delivered via telehealth


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