AHA Releases Comments on Telehealth Recommendations

Low-income consumers to see greatest impact

The American Hospital Association (AHA) recently submitted its comments on the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in the matter of Promoting Telehealth for Low-Income Consumers.

The AHA has endorsed the Commission’s proposal for a Connected Care pilot program and focus on promoting delivery of healthcare directly to the prospective patient’s home. They feel the proposal can fulfill several goals in providing near-term funding.

At the same time, the AHA acknowledged numerous barriers to successful implementation, and thus endorsed the following core principles:

  • the Program’s rules should maximize eligibility to ensure a truly diverse applicant pool, while establishing at least a partial preference for health care providers (“HCPs”) that serve rural communities; 
  • the Commission must acknowledge that hospitals and other HCPs already spend billions of dollars on regulatory compliance, and requirements, and performance evaluation metrics to minimize any additional administrative burdens; 
  • the Commission must recognize that an HCP’s launch and operation of a connected care pilot will entail substantial costs, and the Commission thus should take an expansive view of what costs will be eligible for funding under the Program. 

“The AHA looks forward to working with the Commission as it develops and finalizes its rules for the Connected Care pilot program,” read the conclusion.

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