Amy Lerman, Member of the Firm in the Health Care & Life Sciences practice, in the firm’s Washington, DC, office, was quoted in mHealthIntelligence, in “What the House Subcommittee Hearing Tells Us About Telehealth’s Future,” by Anuja Vaidya. (Read the full version – subscription required.)

Following is an excerpt:

Jeanette Ashlock was only 30, fresh off her honeymoon, when she first started experiencing multiple sclerosis (MS) symptoms.

“My muscles and body started locking up,” the National Multiple Sclerosis Society patient advocate told lawmakers. “I was losing my ability to control my movement and losing function.”

During a health subcommittee hearing on April 10, Ashlock described how her MS diagnosis in 2001 was the start of a harrowing journey, during which she experienced debilitating symptoms and was hospitalized numerous times. Though her MS has since stabilized, Ashlock still requires regular visits with her network of healthcare providers. Telehealth has become an essential tool for her to access this care.   …

“It was impressive to see the levels of interest in this issue and that there generally appears to be bipartisan support for making permanent a number of the flexibilities granted during the PHE to make telehealth services more accessible,” said Amy Lerman, a member of the law firm Epstein Becker Green, in an email.

Telehealth use soared after restrictions on adoption and reimbursement were waived during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, once the public health emergency (PHE) was declared over last May, questions about telehealth's future rose. US lawmakers are now considering how to balance the ongoing need for telehealth-based care models and the potential pitfalls of expanded access to the care modality.

“As one witness commented during the hearing, changes in regulations will be most effective if they can meaningfully increase access to care, promote equity of care among populations, protect consumers, and deliver high-quality healthcare services,” said Lerman. 

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