COVID-19 Resources: Telehealth


COVID-19 has resulted in many new federal and state policy actions to increase access to telehealth during the pandemic. Here are resources to track the latest policy developments and to help health care partners start, or scale up, telehealth services.

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Policy Updates

Video Updates on COVID-19 Policy Changes
Three videos provide an overview of: (1) state actions in addressing COVID-19; (2) Drug Enforcement Agency updates on the use of telehealth and telephone to prescribe controlled substances; and (3) recent policy changes due to the passage of HR 748, the CARES Act, and CMS Medicare updates as well as state actions on telehealth. (Center for Connected Health Policy)

California Telehealth Policy – COVID-19 Changes 
A summary of changes to telehealth policy in California that have been  implemented in responses to COVID-19. Will be updated as policies continue to develop. (Center for Connected Health Policy)

Recommendations to Quickly Promote the Use of Telehealth In California During the COVID-19 Pandemic (PDF)
The California Telehealth Policy Coalition, a coalition of over 70 organizations dedicated to the advancement of telehealth policy in California, outlines its key recommendations to Governor Newsom in this March 18 letter.

Federal Telehealth Coverage Policies in the Time of COVID-19 to Date
Updated list of federal policy action on telehealth in response to COVID-19. Document is being updated by the Center for Connected Health Policy as new policies are released. (Center for Connected Health Policy)

COVID-19 Related State Actions
Provides an inventory of state actions, including California’s, to remove policy barriers to telehealth utilization to address this pandemic. The California section includes the All Plan letter from the Department of Managed Health Care regarding telehealth reimbursement, guidance from the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) to Medi-Cal managed care on emergency telehealth services for COVID-19, DHCS’s notice on “Medi-Cal Payment for Telehealth and Virtual/Telephonic Communications Relative to the 2019-Novel Coronavirus,” and more. Updated as new policies emerge. (Center for Connected Health Policy)

Resources for Health Care Partners Implementing Telehealth

Webinar: Telehealth Triage: How to Use Telehealth During COVID-19 (replay)
This webinar reviews how to use telehealth for triage and treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic. It includes perspectives from patients, advocates and health care providers, as well as a review of various telehealth modalities. The slide deck is available here. (California Telehealth Policy Coalition)

Webinar: Minimizing Disruptions in Care: Behavioral Telehealth (Video and Phone) Skill Development Webinar Series 
This weekly webinar series, running from April 29 through July 8, aims to consolidate learning from the quick transition to behavioral telehealth services in response to COVID 19 and teach practical skills to support ongoing improvement of behavioral telehealth. Webinars are geared toward mental health and Substance Use Disorder providers and their supervisors. They are open to staff from any organization interested in improving their skills in offering behavioral telehealth. (California Institute for Behavioral Health Solutions)

Webinar: COVID-19: The Use of Telehealth in Long Term Care Settings During This National Emergency
This webinar was sponsored by the California Telehealth Policy Coalition. There is an accompanying slide deck (PDF).

Practicing Virtual Care During a Pandemic
A list of resources for community health centers seeking to start or expand telehealth, phone visits, texting to patients and a variety of other virtual care practices. (Center for Care Innovations)

Telehealth Resources from the California Medical Association
CMA has a dedicated telehealth section on its “COVID-19 resources” page. It includes policy updates and practical guides for providers and payers.(California Medical Association)

General Provider Telehealth and Telemedicine Tool Kit (PDF)
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services released this toolkit collating resources and answering key questions for providers seeking to expand telehealth services to Medicare patients in response to COVID-19. (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services)