KARE 11 TV reports on Mayo Clinic’s use of telehealth since the threat of coronavirus…
Mayo Clinic is providing care to patients through telehealth that includes video appointments, remote patient monitoring, interactive care plans, primary care concerns, specialty visits and COVID-related visits.
“All of the patients that I’ve taken care of—and I’m a cardiologist—I’ve taken care of by video for the past three weeks and that’s increasing more and more,” said Dr. Steve Ommen, medical director for Mayo Clinic’s Center for Connected Care.
Even more exciting, to me, than the increase in telehealth use now is the implication that we’ve set a new bar for telehealth with changes in regulations…
The government has temporarily relaxed some regulations that were barriers to delivering telehealth. That includes allowing doctors to practice telemedicine across state lines.
“In order to deliver care to a patient, I really was required to be licensed in the state where they were during the interaction,” Dr. Ommen explained.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has also expanded coverage for telehealth services. Prior to this waiver, Medicare could only pay for telehealth on a limited basis that included patients who lived in designated rural areas.
And the patient expectations…
He added, “The patients are going to appreciate how convenient it is to get care this way and keep them safe. And third, the care teams are all going to be ramped up to do it now in a way that’s going to be just a standard part of their practice.”
According to Dr. Ommen, those three things will put telehealth in a stronger position than it was in just a couple months ago.