Trending in Telehealth: December 21, 2023 – January 3, 2024

By , and on January 5, 2024
Posted In Telehealth

Trending in Telehealth highlights state legislative and regulatory developments that impact the healthcare providers, telehealth and digital health companies, pharmacists and technology companies that deliver and facilitate the delivery of virtual care.

Trending in the past week:

  • Behavioral health
  • Interstate compacts

Finalized Legislation & Rulemaking

  • Arkansas issued a final rule whereby certain assessments under the Arkansas Independent Assessment (ARIA) system may be performed via telemedicine. The ARIA system is used to perform a functional-needs assessment for eligible Medicaid beneficiaries served through one of the state’s waiver programs or state plan personal care services.
  • Mississippi issued a final rule, which adds Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists and Mississippi State Department of Health clinics to the list of Medicaid-covered providers for telehealth services. The final rule also clarifies that Medicaid would not cover physician or other practitioner visits through telehealth for Evaluation and Management Level IV or V visits.
  • New Jersey signed AB 5757  into law on December 31, 2023. This substitute bill amends Section 11 of P.L.2021, c.310 to extend the end date from December 31, 2023, to December 31, 2024, during which time a health benefits plan in New Jersey must extend coverage and payment parity for telehealth services. Healthcare services delivered to a covered person through telemedicine or telehealth must be covered at a rate equal to the in-person provider reimbursement rate, provided the services are otherwise covered by the health benefits plan when delivered in-person.
  • Washington, DC, issued a final rule updating Medicaid’s Assertive Community Treatment reimbursement methodology from a fee-for-service model to a monthly rate model. The new model requires eight (8) contacts with a consumer per calendar month. Three (3) of the required eight (8) contacts can be performed via . The Assertive Community Treatment program provides intensive, integrated, rehabilitative treatment and community-based to adults with serious and persistent mental illness.
  • Virginia joins the Counseling Licensure Compact, effective January 1, 2024. The authorizing bill was signed into law on March 27, 2023, with a delayed effective date.

Legislation & Rulemaking Activity in Proposal Phase

  • In New Jersey, AB 5311 passed the General Assembly with a vote of 73-0-0. If enacted, the bill would enter New Jersey into the Counseling Compact.
  • New Jersey’s General Assembly also passed SB 3604 with a vote of 74-0-0. The bill authorizes the use of healthcare platforms that provide discounted prices for payment of prescription and nonprescription drugs or devices and for telehealth and telemedicine services.

Why it matters:

  • There continues to be an increase in activity surrounding licensure compacts. States closed the year by adopting interstate compacts for a variety of professionals. In general, these state efforts ease the burdens of the licensing process and demonstrate a desire to facilitate multijurisdictional practice without giving up authority over professional licensure.
  • States continue to pass rules to increase access to behavioral health services. This week, Mississippi Medicaid added coverage for services provided by Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists and Mississippi State Department of Health clinics. Washington, DC, also issued final rules permitting coverage for telehealth services under the Assertive Community Treatment reimbursement methodology.

Telehealth is an important development in care delivery, but the regulatory patchwork is complicated. The McDermott digital health team works alongside the industry’s leading providers, payors and technology innovators to help them enter new markets, break down barriers to delivering accessible care and mitigate enforcement risk through proactive compliance. Are you working to make healthcare more accessible through telehealth? Let us help you transform telehealth.

Amanda Enyeart
  Amanda Enyeart maintains a general health industry and regulatory practice, focusing on fraud and abuse, information technology and digital health matters. Amanda advises health care industry clients in all aspects of software licenses and other agreements for the acquisition electronic health record (EHR) systems and other mission critical health IT.  Amanda’s health care IT transactional experience also includes advising clients with respect to software development, maintenance, service and outsourced hosting arrangements, including cloud-computing transactions. Read Amanda Enyeart's full bio.

Taylor Hood
Taylor Hood advises healthcare companies on a variety of litigation, regulatory and healthcare policy matters. Taylor focuses his practice on issues that arise in the managed care sector for both payors and providers, including provider payments, health benefits and insurance practices. Learn more about Taylor's practice:

Adetoro Olugbemi
Adetoro T. Olugbemi focuses her practice on regulatory compliance and due diligence for clients across the healthcare industry, including hospitals and health systems, pharmacies, ambulatory surgery centers, laboratories, digital health startups and others. Adetoro is particularly experienced helping clients navigate issues related to the Stark Law, the Anti-Kickback Statute, the Federal Civil Monetary penalty provisions and the False Claims Act. She is also well-versed in state-level regulatory compliance issues, including state licensure requirements, scope of practice issues, and state fraud and abuse laws.




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