At a Special Meeting of the AMA House of Delegates, the American Medical Association (AMA) adopted a new policy to advocate for widespread adoption of telehealth beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the resolution, the AMA will advocate for the federal government and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, state governments and agencies, and the private health insurance industry to implement uniform rules and regulations for adoption of telehealth technology. Additionally, the AMA is pushing for increased funding and planning for telehealth infrastructure such as broadband and internet-connected devices for both physician practices and patients to support equitable access to telehealth services.
The AMA cited a recent survey by the COVID-19 Healthcare Coalition as evidence of support for telehealth. The survey revealed that 60 percent of responding physicians said that telehealth improved the health of their patients, and more than two-thirds (68 percent) reported they are motivated to increase telehealth use in their practices. Yet, nearly three-quarters of respondents (73 percent) said that reimbursement would be a challenge post-COVID-19 and that technology poses a barrier for sustained use of telehealth.