There are two interesting items in telehealth news.

Iowa Supreme Court Rejects Ban on Telemedicine Abortions

An Iowa Board of Medicine rule requires the presence of a physician when abortion inducing drugs are provided.  Planned Parenthood sued claiming the requirement of physician presence was unconstitutional on the basis that it discriminated against women, due to the fact that physician presence was not required for other telemedicine procedures.  The Iowa Supreme Court agreed with Planned Parenthood, and it is now up to the Iowa Board of Medicine to decide an appropriate regulatory response.

Medicare Telehealth

The Medicare proposed physician fee schedule for 2016 will be published in the Federal Register on July 15, 2015.  Although the proposed PFS does address telehealth, the proposed changes were hardly groundbreaking.

  • Medicare proposed to add codes for prolonged inpatient service and ESRD related services, and
  • To include CRNAs as approved distant site practitioners who may furnish Medicare telehealth services.

The copies of those pages of the proposed fee schedule dealing with telehealth can be found here.