Medicare Telehealth Coverage Will Likely Be Extended By Congress: Kiplinger Economic Forecasts

COVID-era exceptions for telehealth coverage under Medicare are set to expire in 2024.

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Health insurance coverage is notoriously complicated to navigate, but an expanded Medicare telehealth benefit passed by Congress during COVID simplified the process. As this popular benefit is set to expire, Congress is looking to act quickly. To help you understand what is going on and what we expect to happen in the future, our highly-experienced Kiplinger Letter team will keep you abreast of the latest developments and forecasts (Get a free issue of The Kiplinger Letter or subscribe). You'll get all the latest news first by subscribing, but we will publish many (but not all) of the forecasts a few days afterward online. Here’s the latest...

Congress is likely to expand Medicare coverage for telehealth services. A Senate measure would make COVID-era telehealth flexibility permanent, removing all geographic restrictions on such services and expanding originating sites to include a patient’s home and certain clinical sites, among other provisions. The Creating Opportunities Now for Necessary and Effective Care Technologies for Health Act (or the CONNECT for Health Act) has a whopping 59 cosponsors: 30 Republicans, 26 Democrats and three independents (who caucus with Dems). 

Telehealth use surged during the pandemic when many legal restrictions were waived by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Older adults and folks from underserved communities benefited the most from expanded access. But temporary pandemic-era telehealth flexibility is set to expire at the end of 2024. Telehealth advocates have been pushing hard for Congress to act.

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This forecast first appeared in The Kiplinger Letter, which has been running since 1923 and is a collection of concise weekly forecasts on business and economic trends, as well as what to expect from Washington, to help you understand what’s coming up to make the most of your investments and your money. Subscribe to The Kiplinger Letter.

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Sean Lengell
Associate Editor, The Kiplinger Letter

Sean Lengell covers Congress and government policy for The Kiplinger Letter. Before joining Kiplinger in January 2017 he served as a congressional reporter for eight years with the Washington Examiner and the Washington Times. He previously covered local news for the Tampa (Fla.) Tribune. A native of northern Illinois who spent much of his youth in St. Petersburg, Fla., he holds a bachelor's degree in English from Marquette University.