On March 6, President Donald Trump signed an emergency funding bill in response to the coronavirus outbreak, which includes $500 million in waivers for Medicare telehealth restrictions, according to The Hill.
Five things to know:
1. The bill includes $8.3 billion in emergency funding, with $7.76 billion going to federal, state and local agencies. Around $2.2 billion is devoted to preventing virus spread across the U.S. and $3 billion for vaccine research.
2. CMS previously restricted payment for communication technology to beneficiaries in rural areas. That benefit was extended to all beneficiaries in this bill.
3. CMS also pays for non-face-to-face care management services and remote patient monitoring services, according to the fact sheet.
4. The CDC held a call on March 5 to address clinical guidelines for virtual treatment in the wake of the coronavirus spread, according to Politico.
5. American Well CMO Peter Antall, MD, said the company is preparing for an increased volume of telehealth appointments potential due to the coronavirus, according to Politico.