Telemedicine in Illinois: Emergency Measures Made Permanent
Telemedicine Is Here to Stay: What Physicians Need to Know About the New Law
On July 21, 2021, Governor Pritzker signed a new law (Public Act 102-0104) that expands access to telemedicine services for patients throughout Illinois. The new law makes permanent many of the emergency telemedicine rules that were authorized during COVID-19.
Illinois implemented several special rules to facilitate the use of telemedicine during the COVID-19 public health emergency, including requiring private health insurers and Medicaid managed care organizations (MCOs) to:
- Cover services provided via telemedicine
- Reimburse physicians and other healthcare professionals at the same rate as would be paid for delivering services in person
The response to these temporary changes was overwhelmingly positive. An ISMS survey of Illinois physicians found that of the 81% of physicians who reported using telemedicine, three-quarters had not done so prior to the start of the pandemic. The most common barriers to previous telemedicine use included technology requirements and payer reimbursement policies.
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