Texas’ major health insurers have agreed to continue reimbursing network health care providers for telehealth appointments at the same rate which they pay for office visits through the end of 2020. While the agreement applies only to state-regulated plans, both the Employee Retirement System and the Teacher Retirement System will continue telehealth payment parity through the end of the year as well.
“Millions of Texans have chosen to use telemedicine over the past several months, and this new agreement with Texas network health insurers will help ensure that Texans can continue utilizing telehealth options,” Gov. Greg Abbott said in a statement. “I thank the health plans for stepping up to meet the needs of our state during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Telehealth use has increased during the pandemic because it allows patients to receive health care services from their providers through virtual and other technological communication platforms. An estimated 4.5 million Texans have begun using virtual health care services since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new study by Accenture.