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Telehealth expansion measure passes full House

FRANKFORT, Ky. —  The Kentucky House of Representatives passed a measure aimed at expanding access to health care through telehealth medicine. HB 140, sponsored by Rep. Deanna Frazier, R-Richmond, would codify current COVID-related telehealth provisions in statute, ensuring Kentuckians have continued access to medical care.

“The utilization of telehealth has been one of the shining moments of hope throughout this pandemic,” Frazier said. “Expansion of telehealth services has been extremely valuable by allowing for timely, flexible and efficient patient care. During the interim, the Health and Family Services Committee heard testimony that more than 70% of Kentucky physicians have used telehealth during the pandemic. Keeping this service is especially important for those in our most rural parts of the state who may not have access to in-person care in their local communities. HB 140 is a critical step in creating a healthier Kentucky by bringing health care to every corner of the commonwealth.”

The legislation is a continuation of the provisions included in SB 150, which was passed during the 2020 Legislative Session. SB 150 was an integral part of the General Assembly’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak. The bill temporarily relaxed telehealth regulations, which opened the door for the Cabinet for Health and Family Services to expand telehealth services.

In 2018, Kentucky passed what has been called one of the most progressive telehealth laws in the country, and HB 140, if signed into law, would build upon that progress.

HB 140 will now move to the Senate for consideration. To view the measure in its entirety, visit legislature.ky.gov or follow the link here.