VA finalizes rule easing virtual care delivery

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The pre-emption of state laws frees the VA from having to lobby each state to remove barriers that impede its ability to deliver telehealth services, which would be impractical and costly and would delay treatment for veterans and their families, according to the notice.

The agency says it needs the rule to continue expanding its telehealth program, which is especially crucial for rural patients and those with mental health issues.

Several states are in the process of easing telehealth regulations as more providers embrace virtual care as an option for their patients. Last May, for example, Texas enacted a law allowing doctors to provide remote care and patient consultations without a prior in-patient visit, ending a heated legal dispute between Teladoc and the Texas Medical Board.

The American Medical Association previously expressed its support for the rule and the VA’s expansion of telehealth, praising the decision to limit the multi-state licensure exception to VA-employed providers.

Read more: Healthcare Dive

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