Florida Senate Bill calls for exploration of a telehealth compact
Florida Senate Bill 7028, entitled an act relating to telemedicine, would allow the state licensing board and the Florida Department of Health to explore a telemedicine compact for the purposes of increasing access to health care. The bill was introduced this session and will first be considered by the Committee on Health Policy.
While it remains to be seen what will happen with this particular bill, what is clear is that both states and organizations are seeking innovative ways to improve access. Interstate compacts may represent one possible solution to growing concerns about access as the Affordable Care Act continues coming online. To that end several organization are working with CSG’s National Center for Interstate Compacts to explore licensing portability compacts. These include:
- The National Association of State EMS Officials;
- The Federation of State Medical Boards;
- The Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy; and
- The Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards;
The purpose behind these initiatives is to reduce the existing barriers to the process of gaining licensure in multiple states. This has the potential to help facilitate telemedicine and widen access to a variety of medical services in underserved areas of the nation as the ACA is implemented. Licensing compacts also provide a mechanism to ensure state regulatory agencies maintain their licensing and disciplinary authority, while simultaneously providing a framework to share information and processes essential to licensing and regulation across a variety of medical professions.