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New data shows usage of telehealth services has increased by more than 2,000% since last year

22/10/2020

New data shows usage of telehealth services has increased by more than 2,000% since last year

The United States Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has released new data that shows usage of telehealth services has jumped significantly over the past year.


According to the figures, more than 34.5 million services were delivered via telehealth in Medicare and in the Children's Health Insurance Program from March through June. This represents an increase of a whopping 2,532% in services delivered via telehealth compared to March through June 2019.


Furthermore, the agency also notes that there is always a "claims lag" between the time a service occurs and when the claim is reflected in its database. Taking this into account, the actual number of services delivered via telehealth is likely to be higher than reported.


The CMS data reflects the relaxation of federal regulations around virtual care at the start of the pandemic, which caused usage of telehealth services to skyrocket.


Speaking about the figures, CMS Administrator Seema Verma said in a statement: "This revolutionary method of improving access to care is transforming healthcare delivery in America."


[Related reading: Telehealth in the ER affords better outcomes for both patients and healthcare providers – research]

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