The Academy’s Stance on Telehealth
The following stance was adopted by the board of directors of the Academy in April 2021 to aid the Academy and its members in advocating for strong telehealth policies:
- Patients should have coverage for telehealth delivered via audio-only if they cannot effectively access or utilize audio-visual technologies.
- Nutrition care services are critical to comprehensive health care delivery systems and should be covered when provided via telehealth under the same coverage and payment policies as in-person care.
- In declared emergency situations when access to qualified providers is otherwise severely impacted, the modification of certain consumer protection policies such as licensure and HIPAA requirements may be appropriate.
- Public funding and support for broadband internet, technology, digital literacy education and language services are necessary to address racial, economic and geographic health disparities and to address disabilities.
- Publicly funded research on telehealth should be nationally representative and include a wide variety of services and providers, including nutrition care services provided by registered dietitian nutritionists and nutrition and dietetics technicians, registered.
Telehealth Advocacy Checklist
This checklist can help identify improvements that we can advocate for to ensure patients in our state have access to nutrition care services delivered via Telehealth.
- RDNs in all practice settings are identified as eligible to provide and bill for services delivered via telehealth.
- Medical nutrition therapy and other nutrition care services are eligible to be provided and billed for when delivered via telehealth.
- All patients will have access to services appropriately delivered via telehealth including from their own home and without restrictions based on where they live in the state.
- In-person visits should not be required before initiating nutrition care services via telehealth.
- Nutrition care services delivered via telehealth should be paid for at the same rate as inperson visits.
- States should provide funding (or leverage federal funds) to address broadband and technology access and affordability to improve patients’ access to Telehealth.