The American Telemedicine Association (ATA), which has been known for its advocacy of telemedicine and telehealth since 1993 (!), is doubling down with setting up a separate “affiliated trade organization”, ATA Action, for policy advocacy. This is centered on making permanent pandemic-expanded telehealth access for Americans, state and federal telehealth coverage, and appropriate payment policies. ATA Action will be led by Kyle Zebley, ATA vice president, public policy, as executive director. There is a long list of ‘founding members’ and ‘Advocacy Council Members’ listed in the ATA release.
Key policy advocacy is centering on nine major points, including:
- Removing the in-person telemental health requirement
- Increased broadband access
- Coverage through federal programs such as Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) and Rural Health Clinics (RHCs), the Indian Health Service, TRICARE, and the Veterans Health Administration
- Telehealth across state lines while maintaining state authority to regulate the clinical practice
- Remove regulatory roadblocks to decentralized clinical trials
- Align Medicare coverage of remote patient monitoring with how it is practiced
ATA is also confirming that their 2022 annual meeting will be in-person at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center 1-3 May. Information and registration are here.