Opportunities and Barriers for Telemedicine in the U.S. During the COVID-19 Emergency and Beyond

Commercial Insurers Make Changes to Telehealth Policies in Response to COVID-19
(Updated 4/15/2020)
Temporary changes made by commercial insurers:
Reducing cost-sharing for covered telehealth services Waiving co-pays for telehealth:

Aetna (through June 4); Aspire Health Plan; Fidelis Care; Florida Blue (when using Teladoc); Priority Health (through April 30); Prominence Health Plan (when using Teladoc); Upper Peninsula Health Plan (for 90 days); Viva Health (for 30 days)

Waiving all cost-sharing for telehealth if related to COVID-19 screening/testing:

Bright Health; Cigna (through May 31); Moda Health Oregon; PacificSource; Passport Health Plan; Sharp Health Plan

Waiving all cost-sharing for telehealth for any diagnosis:

AllWays Health Partners; AmeriHealth New Jersey (for 90 days); Anthem (for 90 days); Avera Health Plans (through June 14); Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (for 90 days); Capital BlueCross (through April 15); CareFirst (through the public health emergency);

ConnectiCare (through May 31); CommunityCare; EmblemHealth; First Choice Health (for 60 days, if delivered via 98point6 platform); Geisinger Health Plan (through June 15, if delivered via Teladoc); Harvard Pilgrim Health Care; Highmark (for 90 days); Humana; MVP Health Care; Oscar (if delivered via Doctor on Call service); Optima Health (for 90 days); Piedmont Community Health Plan; QualChoice Health Insurance (through June 30); Quartz Health Solutions (for e-visits and video services); The Health Plan (for 90 days); Tufts Health Plan; UnitedHealthcare; UPMC and UPMC Health Plan (through June 15, if delivered by UPMC providers)

Expanding telehealth benefits Aetna: Extending virtual evaluation and monitoring visit benefits to all fully insured members

Blue Cross Blue Shield Association: Expanding access to telehealth and nurse/provider hotlines for fully insured and individual plans

EmblemHealth: Expanding services available via telehealth

Geisinger Health Plan: Expanding telemedicine services to 70+ specialties

Highmark Health: Expanding access to telehealth to all members (including self-funded customers) who had previously opted out of telehealth coverage

Inland Empire Health Plan: Expanding telehealth services for new and established patients

Piedmont Community Health Plan: Permitting mental health counseling through telehealth for all members

Expanding eligible telehealth modalities Medical Mutual of Ohio: Allowing coverage of telephonic visits (without live video) during the current state of emergency
Increasing provider availability via telemedicine Anthem: Increasing physician availability through its service, LiveHealth Online (LHO). Encouraging in-network doctors to join the platform

Florida Blue: Expanding network of primary care doctors and specialists who are able to treat patients virtually

Magellan Health: Permitting all credentialed and contracted behavioral health providers to conduct telehealth video sessions

Premera Blue Cross: Signed agreements with telemedicine platforms (98point6 and Doctor on Demand) to increase services for at least 90 days

Expanding eligible patient location Viva Health: Members can access telehealth from any location, with any in-network physician, nurse practitioner or physician assistant
Reimbursement for telehealth Aetna: Reimbursing for telemedicine at same rate as in-person visits (payment parity)

NOTES: This does not constitute a full list of private insurers who have changed their telehealth policies in response to COVID-19. Many new policies are time-limited, only apply to full insured members, and may change as the pandemic evolves.

SOURCE: AHIP. Health Insurance Providers Respond to Coronavirus (COVID-19). Updated April 15, 2020.
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