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Ohio House Sends Telehealth Bill to Governor Kasich

Legislation modernizes medical care while lowering costs for Ohioans
January 30, 2014
Republican Newsroom

State Representative Anne Gonzales (R-Westerville) has announced that the Ohio House has concurred on Senate changes to Amended Substitute House Bill 123. The legislation requires Medicaid to provide coverage of telehealth services offered by medical facilities.

Telehealth is a new approach to medical care that allows for health care services to be delivered to a patient through the use of audio, video and other telecommunications, or electronic technology. Telehealth can be used for the diagnosis and treatment of a patient at a distant site; improving patient access to clinical experts, mitigating health disparities across the state, while reducing health care costs.

By requiring coverage for telehealth practices, Ohio is joining 45 other states in modernizing its practices, raising the standard of medical care and lowering costs for patients.

“I am glad to see that my colleagues in the Senate continued the good work that was done by the House,” said Rep. Gonzales. “This legislation is a great step in helping cut health care costs in our Medicaid system and will allow patients in rural areas better access to specialists.”

The legislation requires the coverage by Medicaid for telehealth services but leaves what services and when up to the discretion of the Medicaid Director. In addition, the bill extends the peer review within a hospital to be able to follow the telehealth services between two hospitals.

House Bill 123 now will move to Governor Kasich for his signature.