Congressional Committees Work to Extend Telehealth Flexibilities

May 21, 2024

Congressional committees and subcommittees recently made progress toward extending the telehealth flexibilities for Medicare services that were established during the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. This activity follows the 2024 Advocacy Summit, during which volunteer advocates from the Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) were on Capitol Hill urging Congress to permanently extend these flexibilities.

On May 8, 2024, the House Ways and Means Committee marked up several bills related to rural health and approved an extension of telehealth flexibilities in Medicare for two years (through the end of 2026). A week later, the House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee also approved a two-year extension of Medicare telehealth flexibilities during a committee markup of 23 health bills, which included a modified version of the ASCO-endorsed Telehealth Modernization Act.

On May 16, the Senate Finance Committee also held a hearing on rural health care. Much of the hearing focused on issues that are important to the oncology community, including telehealth expansion. The committee subsequently released an outline of several health care priorities for the remainder of the year and included telehealth on the short list of priorities.

Without further congressional action, Medicare’s telehealth flexibilities are set to expire at the end of 2024. Urge your lawmakers to support these flexibilities using the ACT Network.

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