Lawmakers want expanded telehealth coverage to last beyond the pandemic

A bipartisan group of 49 lawmakers led by Senator Brian Schatz says the current state of expanded access and coverage to telehealth services should be the norm going forward. In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, as well as their minority counterparts, the group says any end of year legislation Congress undertakes should include provisions that extend the current level of telehealth access and coverage beyond the end of the coronavirus pandemic. Specifically, they want to see Congress ensure that there aren’t any regional restrictions to access and that people with Medicare can continue using those services from their homes. The provisions will expire unless Congress enacts more permanent legislation.

Some of the notable lawmakers who signed in support of the letter include Senators David Cicilline, Elizabeth Warren, Susan Collins, and Lisa Murkowski. “Congress needs to act now to better serve patients and health care providers during the pandemic, and to ensure that telehealth remains an option after the pandemic,” the letter states.