NEC Endorses Bill To Expand Access to Telehealth Services Amid Pandemic
On October 29, 2020, The New England Council wrote to the New England Senate delegation encouraging them to support the Temporary Reciprocity to Ensure Access to Treatment (TREAT) Act (S. 4421).
This bipartisan legislation would provide temporary reciprocity for health practitioners practicing telehealth during the COVID-19 emergency. During this time of uncertainty, it is crucial that patients are able to continue to see providers with whom they have established relationships, especially for mental health. Telehealth has become vital during this crisis for continuing patient care and providers need the ability to continue that care as patients relocate. Many of the temporary exemptions put in place amid the pandemic have or are due to expire. Particularly as college students throughout the region prepare to leave campus for Thanksgiving, in many cases not returning until the spring, the Council believes it is crucial to address this issue in a timely manner. In its letter, the Council stressed that the TREAT Act would provide a practical solution to ensure consistent access to mental health services during this unusual and challenging time.