New Proposed Telemedicine Rules in Kansas

Posted By American Med Spa Association, Friday, January 4, 2019

The Kansas Board of Healing Arts has proposed new administrative rules that will affect the use of telemedicine by Kansas health care providers. These administrative rules are being adopted to provide additional guidance to the Kansas Telemedicine Act, which was passed last year and went into effect on January 1, 2019. The proposed rules are currently open for public comment pending a public hearing in March 2019.   The proposed rules, which can be read here, will add three sections to the Board’s administrative rules. The first section makes clear that terms such as “distant site,” “telemedicine,” and others that are used in the administrative rules have the same meaning and definition as used in the Kansas Telemedicine Act.   The second section deems the practice of medicine to occur at the location of the patient, known as the “originating site” and not the location of the health care provider. This means that anyone providing health care services via telemedicine to a patient located in Kansas will need to be licensed to practice in Kansas. Similarly, a Kansas health care provider can be located outside the state and still provide services to their patients in the state. While nothing in these rules prohibit a Kansas health care provider from providing services to patients located in other states, most other states also consider the practice of medicine to occur at the location of the patient. So the Kansas licensee runs the risk of practicing medicine without a license in those other states.   The third and final proposed section addresses prescribing drugs via telemedicine. It simply clarifies that when prescribing drugs and medications through a telemedicine exam, all of the same rules and regulations apply as if the prescription was made during an in-person exam. Kansas health care providers will need to be mindful to fulfill all of the prescription requirements in spite of the limitations and ease of performing an exam via telemedicine.   A public hearing on the proposal will take place on March 5, 2019, at the Board’s office in Topeka. Prior to that, public comments can be submitted to Tucker Poling, the Board’s general counsel, by mail at the Board’s address or by email to KSBHA_HealingArts@ks.go.