The Department of Veterans Affairs today published a proposed rule that would allow any VA health care provider to provide telehealth services, within their scope of practice and in accordance with privileges granted to them by the department, wherever the provider or beneficiary is located. “Just as it is critical to ensure there are qualified health care providers on-site at all VA medical facilities, VA must ensure that all beneficiaries, specifically including beneficiaries in remote, rural or medically underserved areas, have the greatest possible access to mental health care, specialty care and general clinical care,” the proposed rule states. “Thus, VA has developed a telehealth program as a modern, beneficiary- and family-centered health care delivery model that leverages information and telecommunication technologies to connect beneficiaries with health care providers, irrespective of the state or location within a state where the health care provider or the beneficiary is physically located at the time the health care is provided.” VA will accept comments on the proposed rule through Nov. 1.

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