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Florida Telehealth Law

Definitions

“Telehealth” means the use of synchronous or asynchronous telecommunications technology by a telehealth provider to provide health care services, including, but not limited to, assessment, diagnosis, consultation, treatment, and monitoring of a patient; transfer of medical data; patient and professional health-related education; public health services; and health administration. The term does not include audio-only telephone calls, e-mail messages, or facsimile transmissions.

 “Telehealth provider” means any individual who provides health care and related services using telehealth and who is licensed or certified under s. 393.17; part III of chapter 401; chapter 457; chapter 458; chapter 459; chapter 460; chapter 461; chapter 463; chapter 464; chapter 465; chapter 466; chapter 467; part I, part III, part IV, part V, part X, part XIII, or part XIV of chapter 468 (OT); chapter 478; chapter 480; part II or part III of chapter 483; chapter 484; chapter 486 (PT); chapter 490; or chapter 491; who is licensed under a multi-state health care licensure compact of which Florida is a member state.

Applies to both Physical and and Occupational Therapy.

Practice Standards

A telehealth provider has the duty to practice in a manner consistent with his or her scope of practice and the prevailing professional standard of practice for a health care professional who provides in-person health care services to patients in this state.

A telehealth provider may use telehealth to perform a patient evaluation. If a telehealth provider conducts a patient evaluation sufficient to diagnose and treat the patient, the telehealth provider is not required to research a patient’s medical history or conduct a physical examination of the patient before using telehealth to provide health care services to the patient.

A telehealth provider may not use telehealth to prescribe a controlled substance unless the controlled substance is prescribed for the following:

    • The treatment of a psychiatric disorder;
    • Inpatient treatment at a hospital licensed under chapter 395;
    • The treatment of a patient receiving hospice services as defined in s. 400.601; or
    • The treatment of a resident of a nursing home facility as defined in s. 400.021.

A telehealth provider and a patient may be in separate locations when telehealth is used to provide health care services to a patient.

A nonphysician telehealth provider using telehealth and acting within his or her relevant scope of practice, as established by Florida law or rule, is not in violation of s. 458.327(1)(a) or s. 459.013(1)(a).

Medical Records

A telehealth provider shall document in the patient’s medical record the health care services rendered using telehealth according to the same standard as used for in-person services. Medical records, including video, audio, electronic, or other records generated as a result of providing such services, are confidential.

Reference

Fla. Stat. FS 456.47

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