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Understanding the Changing World of Telemedicine

July 01, 2022

The COVID-19 pandemic created tremendous stresses on the American healthcare delivery system and surfaced some major gaps that need to be addressed. But one of the more intriguing impacts was the sharp rise in the use of telemedicine, which enabled patients to consult with their healthcare providers from remote locations.

More than two years after the start of the pandemic, an American Medical Association survey in April 2022 of more than 2,300 physicians nationwide found that 85% of doctors are using telehealth to deliver patient care and that 70% report their organization is motivated to continue using this form of virtual care in their practice. The factors behind this popularity of virtual doctor visits are fairly easy to identify.

A report from McKinsey found that telehealth usage exploded in the early days of the pandemic in 2020, scaled back by the fall of that year, and then stabilized at a volume that is a stunning 38 times higher than what it was in February 2020. The analysts attribute the eye-popping growth to increased consumer willingness to use telehealth technology, increased provider willingness to see patients virtually and, perhaps most importantly, regulatory changes that enabled greater access and reimbursement for telemedicine.

The regulatory guidance for telemedicine is still developing — and is uneven between the federal and state levels, as the Important Developments in Telemedicine Under Federal and New York Law practice note on LexisNexis Practical Guidance illustrates — but the direction is clearly toward facilitating patient access to virtual healthcare visits.

This fast-changing regulatory environment around telemedicine is a prime example of why it is so important for legal professionals to have access to the most current legal news, resources and information affecting the healthcare industry.

LexisNexis Practical Guidance, the legal industry’s trusted resource for practice advice, has just released a new Healthcare practice area that organizes this content into an intuitive, all-in-one solution. Practitioners are able to easily stay on top of regulatory changes, efficiently identify and compare state and federal laws and regulations, and access guiding resources that cover all the various tasks and matters that must be addressed to expertly represent healthcare clients.

Practical Guidance Healthcare provides guidance on the critical tasks that attorneys undertake when they represent hospitals and health systems, nursing homes, healthcare professionals and medical groups, health insurance companies or federal/state/local healthcare agencies.

Here are 10 resources and tools found in the new Healthcare section:

Resource Kits

Curated resource kits compile practice notes, trackers, checklists, articles, state law surveys and templates on key healthcare topics. Examples include Healthcare Fraud and Abuse Compliance Resource Kit, Health Information Privacy and Security Resource Kit, and Healthcare Transactions, Licensing and Regulation Resource Kit.

State Law Comparison Tool

This tool allows practitioners to research and compare laws across multiple jurisdictions with answers to user-selected questions to create customized charts. Topics in the section include healthcare fraud and abuse, non-physician practitioners licensing and data breach notification.

State Law Surveys

Discover multi-state surveys for discrete points of law affecting the healthcare space. These surveys can save valuable time to determine on-point authority with links to source material, including statutes and regulations. For example, see the

Telehealth/Telemedicine Services, Payment, and Professional Licensing State Law Survey.

Practice Videos

Video-based guidance is available for a quick and engaging way to get up to speed on important healthcare topics. Examples include this video regarding the federal anti-kickback statute.

Fraud and Abuse Compliance

Resources and tools provide guidance on the fundamentals of federal and state compliance with fraud and abuse regulations, such as this template for a compliance plan.

Health Information Privacy and Security

A wide range of information resources provide richer understanding of the guidance addressing health information privacy and security, including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). For example, see the HIPAA Privacy and Security Training Presentation.

Managed Care, Health Insurance and Employee Health Plans

Practitioners can learn about managed care and health insurance matters from the perspectives of healthcare providers, managed care organizations, health insurers and employee health plans. For example: Managed Care Contracting: Key Provider Considerations Checklist.

Medicare and Medicaid Reimbursement and Compliance

Find practice notes on topics including healthcare financing, Medicare and Medicaid payment systems compliance, and Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP). For example, see Medicare Reimbursement Appeals.

Patient Care and Advance Planning

Valuable resources can help you advise hospitals, long-term care facilities, nursing homes, and other healthcare providers about complex patient care and healthcare advance planning issues. An example is a Healthcare Advance Planning Forms Chart that includes templates for important documents like healthcare proxies and living wills.

Transactions, Licensing and Regulation

Access essential knowledge to effectively and efficiently advise healthcare organizations about core transactional, licensing and regulatory matters with tools such as this Medical Practice Acquisition Due Diligence Checklist.

The new Practical Guidance Healthcare practice area contains valuable tools and resources necessary to practice with confidence and efficiency. Experience it for yourself by signing up for a free 7-day trial of Lexis+.