WRIC: US lawmakers look to expand access to telehealth for Medicare beneficiaries

WRIC (NEXSTAR), BASIL JOHN

Some members of Congress want Medicare’s new access to telehealth to remain even after the pandemic.

“I think it’s become clear to so many Americans the value of telehealth because of this crisis,” Virginia Rep. Abigail Spanberger said.

Spanberger is cosponsoring the “Connect” Act, to make Medicare reimbursement for telehealth, mental health and other services permanent.

“To ensure that Medicare patients have the same access to the same sort of options that VA patients may have, or those who have private insurance may have,” Spanberger said.

The bill also removes current restrictions on services received inside a patient’s home.

“And that pretty much defeats the purpose of having telehealth services available if one cannot use them from one’s home,” Spanberger said.

Spanberger is not alone, with representatives on the other side of the aisle recognizing the need to guarantee telehealth for the long term.

“I think we do need to lean into this effort to reduce and remove unnecessary regulations, especially those that get in the way of seniors accessing healthcare,” Virginia Rep. Ben Cline said.

Cline says seniors in rural areas are especially at risk.

“Telemedicine is the future of healthcare in rural areas, where we not only struggle to provide the needed services but struggle to attract providers to this area,” Cline said.

Cline says broadband expansion will also make Medicare services more accessible for seniors now and in the future.

 

Recent Posts


Feb 22, 2024
Press

Spanberger Urges Health Insurers to Fully Cover Birth Control, As Required by the Affordable Care Act

This Effort Comes After Years of Systemic Noncompliance by Insurance Plans & Women Paying Out of Pocket or Facing Administrative Red Tape to Access Birth Control WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today joined more than 150 U.S. House and U.S. Senate colleagues in urging health insurers to improve access to birth control by […]



Feb 21, 2024
Press

Spanberger Announces Sixth Annual Congressional Art Competition, Invites Virginia High School Students to Submit Artwork

The Winner’s Artwork Will Be Displayed in the U.S. Capitol Building for One Year Alongside Winners from All 50 States WOODBRIDGE, Va. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today invited high school students from Virginia’s Seventh District to submit original artwork for the annual Congressional Art Competition. Every year, Members of the U.S. House of Representatives […]



Feb 16, 2024
Press

ICYMI: Spanberger Hosts Virtual Telephone Town Hall Focused on Issues Facing Virginia Veterans & Military Families

During Thursday’s Interactive Event, the Congresswoman & Representatives from the Virginia Department of Veterans Services Were Joined by More Than 4,100 Virginians WOODBRIDGE, Va. — On Thursday, U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger hosted an open, public telephone town hall focused on issues facing Virginia’s Veterans, military families, and caregivers. During the event, Spanberger was joined by representatives […]