On March 17, 2020, OCR issued guidance indicating that it would exercise enforcement discretion and waive penalties for entities that provide services to individuals using “everyday communication technologies.”
On March 20, 2020, OCR provided additional more detailed guidance on telehealth services applicable to all health care providers covered by HIPAA who provide telehealth services during the COVID -19 public health emergency.
OCR defines “telehealth” as “the use of electronic information and telecommunications technologies to support and promote long-distance clinical health care, patient and professional health-related education, and public health and health administration” (relying on the definition used by the Health Resources and Service Administration of DHHS). Telehealth may be provided through audio, text messaging, or video conferencing. This guidance does not apply to other covered entities, such as insurance companies, that may pay for telehealth services.
Continue Reading OCR Guidance During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency