AHA recommends changes to FCC Rural Health Care Program

AHA News Now

The Federal Communication Commission should update its Rural Health Care Program to meet the growing demand for broadband telehealth services, the AHA said in comments submitted today. Specifically, AHA recommends the program increase the Healthcare Connect Fund and HCF discount percentage; reduce... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: rural, access, Telehealth

Senate Finance Committee passes chronic care bill

AHA News Now

The Senate Finance Committee today voted unanimously to approve the CHRONIC Care Act (S. 870), legislation to improve care management, coordination and outcomes for Medicare beneficiaries with chronic conditions. Among other provisions, the bill would extend the Independence at Home demonstration; provide... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: accountable care organizations, Medicare, ACO, Telehealth, chronic conditions

Shulkin outlines priorities for VA

AHA News Now

Citing progress that the Department of Veterans Affairs is making toward improving patient care, VA Secretary David Shulkin today said the agency’s key priorities are to give veterans greater choices about where they can receive care, modernize the system, focus its resources more efficiently, improve the... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: access, Telehealth, workforce, Behavioral health

GAO issues report on telehealth and remote patient monitoring in Medicare

AHA News Now

Both telehealth and remote patient monitoring may improve or maintain quality of care in Medicare, but concerns regarding payment and coverage restrictions present potential barriers to their use, according to a report released today by the Government Accountability Office. Required by the Medicare Access... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: physicians, Medicare, nurses, Telehealth, telemedicine

AHA report offers strategies to ensure access to care in vulnerable communities

AHA News Now

The AHA today released a report offering hospital leaders nine innovative ways to preserve access to essential health services in vulnerable rural and urban communities. Strategies range from integrating rural hospitals with health clinics in the community to using technology to provide 24/7 care in... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: socioeconomic status, rural, access, Telehealth, emergency care

Administration kicks off Prescription Opioid and Heroin Epidemic Awareness Week

AHA News Now

Federal agencies will participate this week in more than 250 events as part of Prescription Opioid and Heroin Epidemic Awareness Week, proclaimed Friday by President Obama to raise awareness about the prescription opioid and heroin epidemic. Among other activities, the Department of Agriculture today... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: Telehealth, opioids

HRSA awards rural health grants

AHA News Now

The Health Resources and Services Administration yesterday awarded $16 million in fiscal year 2016 rural health grants to build sustainable telehealth programs and networks in medically underserved areas; improve care for populations with high rates of chronic conditions; and research to improve access to... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: rural, Telehealth, chronic conditions

Job-based telehealth benefits on rise; Medicaid clarifies telehealth coverage

AHA News Now

Nine in 10 large employers will make telehealth services available next year to employees in states where it is allowed, up from 70% this year, and virtually all will offer telemedicine by 2020, according to the latest annual survey by the National Business Group on Health. The Large Employers’ 2017... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: Coverage, Medicaid, Telehealth

FCC task force issues broadband health mapping tool

AHA News Now

The Federal Communication Commission’s Connect2Health Task Force today released a web-based mapping tool that allows users to overlay broadband and health data (such as obesity, diabetes and physician access) at the national, state and county levels to identify priority areas for improving broadband... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: population health, Community health, access, Telehealth

CMS releases proposed 2017 physician payment rule

AHA News Now

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services late today issued its proposed rule for the physician fee schedule for calendar year 2017. After application of the 0.5% payment increase required by the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 and other budget neutrality cuts, CMS estimates a... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: quality, physicians, Medicare, regulation, Telehealth

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