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Wicker Testifies on Success of Telehealth Technologies

Miss. Senator Says ‘Mississippi Leads Nation in Maximizing Technology to Improve Patients’ Health’

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., today appeared before the Senate Finance Committee to discuss the promise of telehealth and to encourage the Committee to continue its progress on the “CHRONIC Care Act.” The legislation includes many of the proposals inspired by Wicker’s “CONNECT for Health Act,” which would which would remove barriers to telehealth services for Medicare beneficiaries

Key excerpts of Wicker’s testimony include:

“The University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson has been a leader in telehealth for over a decade. The team there has managed to increase access to quality care and cut costs by using services like remote patient monitoring and tele-emergency, reaching some of our state’s most rural, vulnerable, and costly patients.”

“One of many Mississippi telehealth success stories is the Diabetes Telehealth Network, a remote patient monitoring program that provides rural Mississippi patients who have uncontrolled diabetes with routine access to a provider through a medical tablet. This partnership first followed 100 chronically ill patients in the underserved Mississippi Delta. The technology allowed providers to monitor and care for the patients remotely on a daily basis, following their vital signs and intervening when things didn’t look good. Throughout the course of the first year, zero of the 100 patients were admitted to the hospital. Think about that. No emergency room visits for any of these previously chronically ill patients. This is excellent care that can improve patients’ lives. In fact, telehealth can save money, too. The Mississippi Department of Medicaid found that if this remote monitoring program were extended to just 20 percent of Mississippi’s diabetic Medicaid population, the state would save $189 million per year.”

“However, Medicare is behind the curve, limiting access for millions of seniors. Imagine the incredible impact that this technology could have if Medicare would allow its most vulnerable beneficiaries to use something like remote patient monitoring. I am confident that the success we have seen in Mississippi can be replicated for patients across the United States upon enactment of the CHRONIC Care Act and ultimately enactment of CONNECT for Health.”




5/16/17

Posted May 17, 2017 - 8:14 am

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