by Attorney Ashley Securda
Due to the recent coronavirus outbreak, the Pennsylvania Department of State’s Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs has released information regarding how healthcare providers can provide treatment to individuals seeking treatment during this difficult time in our nation.
Beginning on Monday, March 23, 2020, healthcare providers are allowed to treat patients remotely using telemedicine services. This will allow healthcare professionals the flexibility to continue to treat patients in light of the coronavirus outbreak and at the same time abide by the social distancing standards outlined by the Department of Health.
Telemedicine is the practice of medicine using technology to deliver care at a distance. A physician in one location uses a telecommunications infrastructure to deliver care to a patient at a distant site.
The Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs, which governs all licensing healthcare professionals, indicated that all of the following boards can use telemedicine to treat patients remotely:
• Osteopathic Medicine
• Nursing Home Administrators
• Occupational Therapy Education and Licensure
• Physical Therapy
• Social Workers, Marriage and Family Therapists, and Professional Counselors
• Examiners in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology
• Veterinary Medicine