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Physician Center > Legal Issues > Board of Medicine Adopts Telemedicine Rule

Board of Medicine Adopts Telemedicine Rule

Christopher L. Nuland, Esq.
General Counsel

After close to a full year of hearings and testimony, the Florida Board of Medicine this Spring adopted a Telemedicine rule (64B8-9.0141) supported by the FSDDS.

Unlike the Legislature, which was unable to resolve issues pertaining to out-of-state providers and reimbursement, the Florida rule applies only to Florida licensed physicians. Under the new rule, Telemedicine may be used to establish a physician-patient relationship, but may NOT be used to prescribe controlled substances (it should be noted that the Board has clarified that this does NOT preclude the ordering of controlled substances in an inpatient setting). More importantly, the rule affirmatively states that the use of Telemedicine does NOT alter the standard of care, leaving the physician to decide if he or she can provide the service adequately. Finally, the parties agreed that the restrictions do not apply in emergency situations, such as the delivery of patients to an emergency facility.

Beginning in April of 2013, all interested parties, including the FSDDS, hospitals, and telemedicine industry experts, participated in a series of meetings designed to craft a rule with which all stakeholders could agree. The Board should be commended on developing a consensus on the final product that was so broad that not a single party chose to file a challenge to the final rule.

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