June 15, 2021 – The Partnership to Advance Virtual Care (the “Partnership”) joined 20 other organizations in support of legislation to eliminate in-person requirements for mental health services furnished via telehealth.

“Over the pandemic, we’ve seen an increased need for telehealth services whether it’s for substance use disorders, physical ailments or mental health issues. Medicare patients deserve direct access to telemental health services and this bill removes barriers to make this possible,” said Dr. Cassidy.

On June 15, 2021, Senators Cassidy, Smith, Thune, and Cardin introduced the Telemental Health Care Access Act of 2021, which would eliminate a requirement that Medicare beneficiaries who receive mental health services via telehealth, be seen in-person by their provider.

PAVC supports expanded access to mental health services and the elimination of the arbitrary in-person requirements for tele-mental health services. The pandemic has underscored the importance of increasing access to mental and behavioral health services and the Partnership believes Congress should take action to ensure beneficiaries can receive the necessary mental health care they need.