Evers signs bill expanding telehealth reimbursement

RICHLAND CENTER, Wis. (AP) — Gov. Tony Evers has signed a bipartisan bill expanding Medicaid reimbursement for telehealth services.

The governor signed the bill Monday afternoon at Richland Hospital in Richland Center.

Current state law requires Medicaid reimbursement for mental health services provided through telecommunications. The bill expands reimbursement to all Medicaid-allowed benefits for provider-to-provider consultations and transmitting patients’ medical data in both real time and not in real time. The bill also expands Medicaid reimbursements for any services provided through communication technology covered under Medicare.

State health officials have estimated the changes could cost between $15 million and $29.4 million annually but notes the costs will likely be phased in as providers use telecommunication more.

Evers said in a statement that technology can help people struggling with provider shortages in rural Wisconsin.