- Telehealth Guidelines
Many health care professions in Washington have statutory authority to offer services using telehealth technologies. The Department of Health has adopted a guidance document identifying these professions: Healthcare Professions with Authority to Provide Telehealth Services (PDF). Individual professions may have more specific guidance:
- Telemedicine Training Requirements
Beginning January 1, 2021, health care professionals who are offering telemedicine services to patients, are required to complete telemedicine training. See the Department of Health policy statement with additional information related to this requirement (PDF) for more information. Allopathic physicians (MDs) and osteopathic physicians are exempt from this requirement.
To learn more about the different training options available and access additional resources, see the Washington State Telehealth Collaborative Training page. To complete the free and publicly available telemedicine training, select enroll and create a Canvas account to access the Washington State Medical Professional TelemedicineTraining. Below are additional resources related to telehealth. You may also find additional resources by visiting the Chiropractic Quality Assurance Commission, the Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission, and the Washington Medical Commission websites.
- Substitute House Bill 1196
Substitute House Bill 1196 was passed during the 2021 legislative session and requires the following regarding the practice of telemedicine:
- Beginning July 25th, 2021, providers who bill a patient or the patient's health plan for audio-only telemedicine services must receive patient consent for the billing prior to rendering the service. The patient consent requirement is applicable to PEBB/SEBB plans, private health plans, behavioral health administrative services organizations and managed care organizations contracted with the Health Care Authority, as well as Medicaid managed care plans contracted with the Health Care Authority.
- Beginning, January 1st, 2023, the provider must have an established relationship with a patient for an audio-only telemedicine service to be compensated at the same rate as an in-person visit. An established relationship is defined as a prior in-person visit within the last year with the provider, another provider at the same clinic, or with the referring provider.
- Substitute Senate Bill 5423
During the 2021 Legislative Session, the legislature passed Substitute Senate Bill 5423. This bill allows Washington state Allopathic Physicians (MDs) and Osteopathic Physicians (DOs) to consult with practitioners licensed in another state, via telemedicine, in order to diagnose and treat a Washington provider's established patient.
For more questions, please contact the Board of Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery or the Washington Medical Commission.
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