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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: January 12, 2021 03:29 PM
From: Senator Elder A. Vogel, Jr.
To: All Senate members
Subject: Telemedicine
Telemedicine is the remote delivery of health care services and medical information using telecommunications technology. Telemedicine is a significant and rapidly growing component of health care. Through the use of telemedicine, specialists and other health care providers are able to expand their reach, helping COVID-19 patients, high risk patients, and stay in home patients. It would also allow rural patients the ability to stay in their communities, avoiding long distance travel for specialized care.  This bill would have a strong impact on how modern medicine handles the ever growing COVID-19 virus.  A local news program highlighted the shortage of rape kits and inexperienced staff equipped to handle this particular issue at many hospitals throughout the state.  Through the use of telemedicine a hospital would have the capability of contacting an expert to assist a non-experienced hospital with the necessary steps to assist  the patient rather then turning them away.

I will be re-introducing SB 857 P.N. 1347 defining telemedicine, offering guidelines outlining who can provide telemedicine services, and providing clarity around insurance company reimbursement for these services. Although the legislation requires payments for telemedicine services, those payments will be established between the provider and insurer.

Cosponsors from last session included Senators Argall, Aument, Baker, Bartolotta, Blake, Brewster, Costa, Gordner, Haywood, Killion, Langerholc, Martin, Mensch, Phillips-Hill, Santarsiero, Schwank, Stefano Street, J. Ward, K. Ward, Yaw and Yudichak

Introduced as SB705