Senators Tout Telehealth in Letter to Sec. Price | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

Senators Tout Telehealth in Letter to Sec. Price

February 16, 2017
by Rajiv Leventhal
| Reprints

Several U.S. senators have sent a letter with bipartisan support to Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tom Price regarding healthcare in rural America, and how health IT has helped navigate challenges.

U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, (R-Miss), Jon Tester, (D-Mont.), Chuck Grassley, (R-Iowa), and Heidi Heitkamp, (D-N.D.), were joined by 37 Senators in writing the letter which emphasizes the importance of rural healthcare providers and their critical role in rural communities. The letter to Sec. Price read, in part, “As you take on this new leadership role at HHS, we request that you work with us to ensure that the federal government does not act as an impediment to providing healthcare in rural communities. Overreaching and onerous regulations from Washington disproportionately harm rural America. We believe that together we can enact and implement effective policies that help providers innovate in care delivery and enable them to make efficient use of available resources.”

The letter continued, “We recognize that providers need to adapt to changes in the delivery of healthcare. We are encouraged by innovations we have seen in our states as providers test new care models and technologies like telehealth and remote patient monitoring. We know you will find bipartisan interest in supporting these types of innovations, and we look forward to working with you to improve our healthcare system. We recognize the importance of tackling this issue in a fiscally responsible way but believe investments in rural America yield substantial returns on investment.”

Wicker added himself, “Nearly 90 percent of our nation is rural, including many parts of Mississippi. Technology and innovation have allowed for better access to healthcare, but there are still vulnerable areas where quality, affordable care is lacking. I look forward to working with Secretary Price and the new Administration to ensure that rural America has a seat at the table as we move forward with improving the nation’s healthcare system.”

More than 80 rural hospitals have closed in recent years. Some estimates show another 700 rural hospitals are at risk of closure, according to a statement from Wicker’s office.

Get the latest information on Health IT and attend other valuable sessions at this two-day Summit providing healthcare leaders with educational content, insightful debate and dialogue on the future of healthcare and technology.

Learn More

Topics

News

ONC Roundup: Senior Leadership Changes Spark Questions

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) has continued to experience changes within its upper leadership, leading some folks to again ponder what the health IT agency’s role will be moving forward.

Media Report: Walmart Hires Former Humana Executive to Run Health Unit

Reigniting speculation that Walmart and insurer Humana are exploring ways to forge a closer partnership, Walmart Inc. has hired a Humana veteran to run its health care business, according to a report from Bloomberg.

Value-Based Care Shift Has Halted, Study Finds

A new study of 451 physicians and health plan executives suggests that progress toward value-based care has stalled. In fact, it may have even taken a step backward over the past year, the research revealed.

Study: EHRs Tied with Lower Hospital Mortality, But Only After Systems Have Matured

Over the past decade, there has been significant national investment in electronic health record (EHR) systems at U.S. hospitals, which was expected to result in improved quality and efficiency of care. However, evidence linking EHR adoption to better care is mixed, according to medical researchers.

Nursing Notes Can Help Predict ICU Survival, Study Finds

Researchers at the University of Waterloo in Ontario have found that sentiments in healthcare providers’ nursing notes can be good indicators of whether intensive care unit (ICU) patients will survive.

Health Catalyst Completes Acquisition of HIE Technology Company Medicity

Salt Lake City-based Health Catalyst, a data analytics company, has completed its acquisition of Medicity, a developer of health information exchange (HIE) technology, and the deal adds data exchange capabilities to Health Catalyst’s data, analytics and decision support solutions.