- 22 healthcare organizations are urging the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and Medicare Payment Advisory Committee (MedPac) to consider alternative data sources in making cost estimates and analyses of telemedicine use in the Medicare program.
- The groups said in a Monday letter to CBO Director Keith Hall and Med PAC Executive Director Mark Miller there is a lack of Medicare data on telemedicine due to outdated statutory restrictions on its use.
- A study published earlier this month in JAMA found that while telemedicine visits among Medicare beneficiaries increased from 2004 to 2013, less than 1% received a telemedicine visit in 2013.
There is ample experience with telemedicine outside in the non-Medicare population, the letter says.
The letter’s authors note that numerous studies show the quality and cost-effectiveness of telemedicine in fee-for-service and managed care populations.
Despite the “difficulty of finding sufficient Medicare data on telemedicine … alternative data sources can and should be used to inform and produce an analysis of providing Medicare beneficiaries access to telemedicine, including telehealth and remote patient monitoring,” they wrote.
The potential data sources the organizations cited were the Department of Veterans Affairs, Medicaid, and the commercial sector.
Among those who penned the letter were Stanford Health Care, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Telehealth Program, UC-Davis, and Scripps Translational Health Institute.