Senator Hunter


SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Mattie Hunter (D-Chicago) supported an initiative Sunday to maintain and expand telehealth services.

“COVID-19 has significantly increased the need for remote health services, but the truth is this need has always been here and will remain here once this pandemic is behind us,” Hunter said. “Whether we are isolating during a pandemic or simply elderly people with mobility or transportation issues, we need to be able to receive the necessary services and treatment, and telehealth gives patients that option.”

Currently, insurance companies may provide coverage for telehealth services, but are not required to do so.

House Bill 3308 will maintain and expand telehealth services by requiring insurance companies to provide similar billing processes for both in-person and telehealth services. Insurance companies would also be prohibited from requiring in-person contact between patients and health care professionals before allowing telehealth services.

“We need to ensure that telehealth services will still be an option well after this pandemic is over,” Hunter said. “It is crucial that these services stay in place to improve patient outcomes and decrease barriers to health care access.”

Thirty-seven states have telehealth parity laws that require private insurance companies to reimburse providers for care delivered remotely via telemedicine.

The measure has passed the Senate, and goes back to the House for concurrence.