Key Telehealth Bill Introduced in Congress

Posted Saturday, June 5, 2021

Congress has introduced the Creating Opportunities Now for Necessary and Effective Care Technologies Bill.

The CONNECT Act includes a variety of provisions. Those with direct impact to home care and hospice providers follow are, as follows:

  • Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretarial authority to waive telehealth requirements – This would allow the HHS Secretary to waive certain requirements related to payment for telehealth services if quality of care would not be adversely impacted. These waivers would need to be reassessed at least every three years to ensure quality of care remains undiminished.
  • Removal of geographic requirements for telehealth.
  • Expansion of originating sites to include the home.
  • Waiver of telehealth requirements during public health emergencies.
  • Use of telehealth services for hospice recertification – would allow for telehealth for recertification of the Medicare hospice benefit.
  • Provides $3 million for audit, investigation, and other oversight activity relative to telehealth services
  • Mandates the HHS Secretary to make available educational resources and training sessions of telehealth service requirements for beneficiaries and providers.

The pandemic has shown that telehealth works, and it is embraced by patients and is not going away soon.

Source: NAHC Report

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