Panel Discussion: Zooming in on Telehealth

The COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE) required a change from the way many things were done before the pandemic. It has undoubtedly reshaped the healthcare industry by shining a light on its reliance on in-person care.

The digital health technologies necessary to provide care anytime or anywhere have been available for years. However, individuals, providers and health systems have been slow to embrace these tools until now. What started as a necessary shift to digitally enabled remote care has progressed to the increasing need to revisit care delivery in the short and long term.

Many of the temporary telehealth policy changes made by federal and state policymakers during the public health emergency strengthened access and ensured the continued affordability of telehealth services.

How can policymakers sustain telehealth successes post-pandemic?

In a recent virtual event hosted by CareFirst BlueCross Blue Shield (CareFirst), a panel of industry experts addressed opportunities policymakers have to ensure access to and quality of care, virtually or in-person, remains a top focus of the healthcare industry.

Brian R. Wheeler, Vice President of Provider Collaboration and Network Transformation, CareFirst, moderated the event and led the panel discussion that included:

  • Melisa S. Byrd, Senior Deputy Director and Medicaid Director, D.C. Department of Health Care Finance (DHCF)
  • Ateev Mehrotra, M.D., M.P.H., Associate Professor of Health Care Policy and Medicine, Harvard Medical School
  • Magda Rusinowski, Vice President, Business Group on Health
  • Sam Starbuck, Vice President, Privia Quality Network

Specific topics covered during the panel discussion included:

  • How telehealth and federal/state policy flexibilities enabled access to care during the pandemic
  • The role of telehealth in a post-pandemic world
  • How policymakers can examine the value, cost, and quality of in-person care, audio-only and video visits

Watch the full panel discussion to learn more about the role of telehealth in the future of care delivery.