State Telemedicine Policy Information

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Rhode Island Telemedicine Policy

Rhode Island Telemedicine Policy

Rhode Island approved a telemedicine parity law in 2016 that requires private payers to cover telehealth services in the same way as in-person services. Prior to this, practicing telemedicine in Rhode Island was a bit tricky, but recent legislation is making it easier for providers to utilize technology to help treat their patients.

State Policy Overview

Medicaid

Yes

Private Payer

Yes

Parity

Yes

Additional State Telemedicine Info

Parity Laws

Rhode Island passed a parity law in 2016 that requires private payers to cover telemedicine services to the same extent that services are covered via in-person care.

However, there is no payment parity which means plans are not required to pay providers at the same reimbursement rate for identical telemedicine-based or in-person services by law. Most companies do still tend to reimburse at the same rate.

Medicaid

Rhode Island Medicaid does not have much of a telemedicine policy outlined yet, but does reimburse for several telehealth service CPT codes related to follow-up inpatient consultations. You can view the full list of codes here.

Type Of Telemedicine Covered

In Rhode Island, telemedicine does not include an audio-only telephone conversation, email message or facsimile transmission between the provider and patient.

The law does include live video reimbursement as well as store-and-forward reimbursement. 

Covered Health Services

Because of Rhode Island’s parity law, a health insurer cannot exclude a health care service for coverage solely because the health care service is provided through telemedicine and is not provided through in-person consultation or contact.

Eligible Healthcare Providers

Rhode Island does not limit which healthcare providers can practice telemedicine.

Online Prescriptions

Rhode Island does not have any regulations about prescribing medications via telehealth.

 

Informed Patient Consent

Telemedicine-specific informed patient consent is only required for email or text-based communications between patients and physicians. You can read more about our consent best practices here.

Cross-State Telemedicine Licensing

Rhode Island allows out-of-state physicians to consult with Rhode Island physicians via telemedicine. Out-of-state physicians can also treat patients when there is an existing relationship.

Rhode Island has not yet joined the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact, which helps to expedite the licensing process for out-of-state physicians.

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