Telehealth Services in Nebraska Get a Boost

 Telemedicine Services in Nebraska

Telehealth Services Must Now Be Covered by Health Plans in the State of Cornhusker. Nebraska's telemedicine providers, contractors, and patients can benefit from telehealth insurance coverage, joining the national majority. Promoted earlier this year by Senator Mark Kolterman (R) of Nebraska under the number 19459004 LB92 and signed by Governor Pete Ricketts (R) in late April, the new law came into effect on August 24, 2017. While the law contains a telehealth provision, it does not require parity of payment for telehealth services.

The new Nebraska Telehealth Insurance Coverage Act is found in section 44-7,107 of the Nebraska Constitution and states, in its entirety, the following:

Any insurer offering: (1) an insurance policy for individual or group sickness or accident, a certificate or underwriting contract delivered, delivered for delivery or renewed in that State; 2) any hospital, medical or surgical insurance policy or (3) any self-funded benefits plan to the extent that federal law does not prevail, in a policy, certificate, contract or plan offered or renewed from the date this Act comes into force coverage only because the service is provided by telehealth as defined in section 44-312 and that it is not provided through an in-person consultation or contact between a licensed health care provider and a patient. This section does not apply to a policy, certificate, contract or plan that covers a particular disease or other limited benefit coverage.

Although LB92 expresses the intention to require health care plans to cover telehealth services, the current wording of sections 44-7,107 could have been worded more precisely, depending on the language used. favorite model. The law uses the proscribed phrase "does not exclude … a coverage service solely because the service is offered through telehealth". Providers and patients may have found it easier if the law used an affirmative phrase, stating that insurers through telehealth if this service is covered by a consultation or in-person contact. But to be honest, Nebraska lawmakers did much better than the Michigan Telehealth Law

.

I hope that the language of the law will not be misinterpreted by insurers seeking to deny or avoid coverage of telehealth services. Fortunately, there is ample evidence in the official record reflecting the clear intention of the legislator of the law, and providers may indicate that in the event that they find telehealth claims denied by the insurers. Consider, for example, the following three documents:

The legislator, in his statement of intent expressed a clear purpose for the reasons of the new law, stating:

"LB92 provides coverage for telemedicine services by a payer, regardless of the location of the provider relative to the patient, provided that the provider is licensed in the state of Nebraska. does not exclude a coverage service only because this service is provided by telemedicine and that it is not provided by in-person consultation or contact between a licensed health care provider and a health care provider. patient. "

This reflects the transcript of Senator Kolterman's statements to the Banking, Trade and Insurance Committee, in which he said: "The language of LB92 requires health insurance companies to cover all the services already offered by telehealth. covered for an in-person consultation. "

The Budget Memo for the budgetary impact of the bill also recognizes that the new law requires coverage because it may have a tax effect on the tax regimes. health care that does not cover telehealth services. The note states:

LB 92 provides that health insurance plans offered in the state do not exclude a coverage service solely because the service is provided by telehealth. The Department of Administrative Services and the University of Nebraska indicate that telehealth services are licensed under health insurance plans available to state employees and universities, so the project plans to law has no fiscal impact for these entities. If benefit plans covering employees of policy subdivisions do not provide such services, there could be an unknown tax impact in terms of the cost of Medicare benefits.

The promulgation of the Nebraska Telehealth Insurance Coverage Act brings the account to approximately 34 states plus D.C. as having laws requiring commercial insurance plans to cover telehealth services. The continued expansion of coverage and reimbursement means that providers can improve telehealth offerings, both for immediate savings and increasing revenue-generating opportunities, not to mention quality and patient satisfaction . We will continue to monitor states across the country on this important issue.

For more information on telemedicine, telehealth, virtual care and other innovations in health, including the team, publications and other documents, visit Foley & # 39; s Telemedicine & Virtual Care Practice

.

Disclaimer

This blog is made available by Foley & Lardner LLP ("Foley" or "the Firm") for informational purposes only. It is not intended to convey the legal position of the firm on behalf of a client, nor to provide specific legal advice. The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of Foley & Lardner LLP, its partners or customers. As a result, do not act on this information without seeking the advice of an authorized lawyer.
This blog is not meant to create, and the receipt of it does not constitute, a lawyer-client relationship. Communicating with Foley through this website via email, blog post or otherwise, does not create an attorney-client relationship for any legal matter. Therefore, any communication or material that you transmit to Foley through this blog, whether by email, blog or otherwise, will not be considered confidential or proprietary.
The information on this blog is published "IN THE STATE" and is not guaranteed to be complete, accurate and up-to-date. Foley makes no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, as to the operation or content of the site. Foley expressly disclaims all other warranties, warranties, conditions and representations of any kind, express or implied, arising from any law, law, commercial or other use, including any implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose particular, title and offense. In no event shall Foley or any of its partners, officers, employees, agents or affiliates be liable, directly or indirectly, under any theory of law (contract, tort, negligence or otherwise) , for you or any other person, for any claim, loss or damage, direct, indirect special, incidental, punitive or consequential, resulting or occasioned by the creation, use or trust on this site (including information and other content) or any third party website or the information, resources or materials accessed through these websites.
In some jurisdictions, the content of this blog may be considered an advertising advocate. If applicable, please note that previous results do not guarantee a similar result. The photographs are for dramatic purposes only and may include models. Similarities do not necessarily imply the current status of client, partnership or employee.

Advertisements