WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- The American Telemedicine Association (ATA) and American Academy of Dermatology Association (AADA) today issued a joint letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), requesting coverage of dermatology services delivered via telemedicine.
The two organizations are asking CMS to “clearly identify the visualization of photographs as a covered service, thereby allowing the broader application of this cost-effective and access-enabling technology.” The letter documents numerous studies showing that the use of store-and-forward teledermatology is a cost-effective strategy for providing broader access to dermatological care. In use since the 1970s, teledermatology can improve access to specialist care for geographically underserved, rural, disabled, or institutionalized patients with skin diseases.
The letter represents a milestone in cooperation between ATA and a leading medical society in promoting telemedicine. “The support by medical societies has been seen as a critical goal in deploying telemedicine and allowing patients and consumers with better access to healthcare beyond the walls of hospitals and doctor’s offices,” said Jonathan Linkous, CEO of the American Telemedicine Association.
“The practice of dermatology heavily relies on patient history and visual examination to make a diagnosis, both facilitated by advancements in technology that allow for high quality care through telemedicine,” said Ronald L. Moy, MD, FAAD, President of the American Academy of Dermatology Association. “With comprehensive patient information and clear images, the dermatologist can often make a diagnosis at a distance and advise the local doctor how to care for the patient, keeping patients out of high-cost care sites and allowing patients access to care that may have otherwise seemed unattainable.”
The letter was signed by Ronald L. Moy, MD, FAAD, President of the American Academy of Dermatology Association and Dale C. Alverson, MD, FAAP, President of the American Telemedicine Association.
The American Telemedicine Association is the leading resource and advocate promoting access to health care for consumers and health professionals via telecommunications technology. ATA’s members include representatives from traditional medicine, academic medical centers, technology companies, medical societies, government and others to overcome barriers to the advancement of telemedicine. For more information, go to www.americantelemed.org.
The American Academy of Dermatology (Academy), founded in 1938, is the largest, most influential, and most representative of all dermatologic associations. A sister organization to the Academy, the American Academy of Dermatology Association is the resource for government affairs, health policy and practice information for dermatologists, and plays a major role in formulating policies that can enhance the quality of dermatologic care. With a membership of more than 16,000 physicians worldwide, the Academy is committed to: advancing the diagnosis and medical, surgical, and cosmetic treatment of the skin, hair and nails; advocating high standards in clinical practice, education, and research in dermatology; and supporting and enhancing patient care for a lifetime of healthier skin. For more information, contact the Academy at 1-888-462-DERM (3376) or www.aad.org.
American Telemedicine Association
Ben Forstag, Director of Communications, 202-223-3333
American Academy of Dermatology Association
Jennifer Allyn, Lead PR Specialist, 847-240-1730
KEYWORDS: United States North America District of Columbia
INDUSTRY KEYWORDS: Technology Data Management Telecommunications Health Public Policy/Government Healthcare Reform Mobile/Wireless Public Policy White House/Federal Government General Health Managed Care