A public hearing on “telemedicine” rules will be held Thursday, December 8, at 1 pm in the Lobby Hearing Room of the Rhodes State Office Tower, 30 E. Broad St., Columbus, OH. The rules are proposed to implement Section 4731.74 of the Ohio Revised Code by setting the standards for prescribing drugs to a patient who is at a different location from the physician and on whom the physician has never conducted an in-person examination. The Ohio Academy of Family Physicians has provided comment throughout the rules-making process.
The current version of the rule, reads in part, as follows:
- The physician shall establish the patient’s identity and physical location
- The physician shall obtain the patient’s informed consent for treatment through a remote evaluation
- The physician shall request the patient’s consent and, if granted, forward the medical record to the patient’s primary care provider or other health care provider, if applicable, or to refer the patient to an appropriate health care provider or health care facility
- The physician shall, through interaction with the patient, complete a medical evaluation that is appropriate for the patient and the condition with which the patient presents and that meets the minimal standards of care, which may include portions of the evaluation having been conducted by other Ohio licensed healthcare providers acting within the scope of their professional license
- The physician shall establish or confirm, as applicable, a diagnosis and treatment plan, which includes documentation of the necessity for the utilization of a prescription drug. The diagnosis and treatment plan shall include the identification of any underlying conditions or contraindications to the recommended treatment
- The physician shall document in the patient’s medical record the patient’s consent to treatment through a remote evaluation, pertinent history, evaluation, diagnosis, treatment plan, underlying conditions, any contraindications, and any referrals to appropriate health care providers, including primary care providers or health care facilities
- The physician shall provide appropriate follow-up care or recommend follow-up care with the patient’s primary care provider, other appropriate health care provider, or health care facility in accordance with the minimal standards of care;
- The physician shall make the medical record of the visit available to the patient
- The physician shall use appropriate technology that is sufficient for the physician to conduct all steps in this paragraph as if the medical evaluation occurred in an in-person visit.”
The entire rule can be viewed online.
Oral or written testimony may be presented by any person affected by the proposed actions. Written comments may be provided at the public hearing. However, persons interested in providing written comments are encouraged to do so no later than Wednesday, December 7, to Sallie Debolt.