November 14, 2023
|The Honorable Benjamin Cardin||The Honorable Steve Daines|
|Senate Committee on Finance||Senate Committee on Finance|
|Subcommittee on Health Care||Subcommittee on Health Care|
|215 Dirksen Senate Office Building||215 Dirksen Senate Office Building|
|Washington, DC 20510||Washington, DC 20510|
Re: MGMA Statement for the Record – Senate Committee on Finance Subcommittee on Health Care’s Hearing, “Ensuring Medicare Beneficiary Access: A Path to Telehealth Permanency”
Dear Chairman Cardin and Ranking Member Daines:
On behalf of our member medical group practices, the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) would like to thank the Subcommittee for the opportunity to provide the following feedback in response to your hearing, “Ensuring Medicare Beneficiary Access: A Path to Telehealth Permanency.” We appreciate your leadership in holding this hearing as permanent telehealth reform is critical to medical groups’ ability to continue providing high-quality care to beneficiaries nationwide.
With a membership of more than 60,000 medical practice administrators, executives, and leaders, MGMA represents more than 15,000 group medical practices ranging from small private medical practices to large national health systems representing more than 350,000 physicians. MGMA’s diverse membership uniquely situates us to offer the following policy recommendations.
MGMA has long supported commonsense telehealth policy reforms to expand access to care. Prior to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE), the utilization of telehealth services was stymied by overly restrictive regulatory requirements — in 2016, only 0.25% of beneficiaries in fee-for service Medicare utilized telehealth services. The flexibilities enabled by Congress and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in response to the COVID-19 PHE facilitated patients access to critical care through telehealth during the pandemic.