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Huckleberries Online

Idaho Punishes Telemedicine Doc

Telemedicine – doctors treating patients over the phone, online or by videoconferencing – is a growing subset of the health care system. But Idaho’s medical licensing board doesn’t approve and earlier this year punished a doctor for prescribing a common antibiotic over the phone. The sanctions against Dr. Ann DeJong are so severe that her board certification is threatened. State lawmakers are more welcoming, seeing telemedicine as an option to bring health care to sparsely populated rural areas and address a severe doctor shortage in the state. The Idaho Legislature passed a bill nearly unanimously this year calling for stakeholders to set state standards for the practice of telemedicine. In the meantime, the nation’s largest provider of telemedicine has pulled out of Idaho, citing regulatory issues/Betsy Russell, Eye on Boise. More here.

Question: Do you think Idaho is a bit behind the times here?

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D.F. Oliveria
D.F. (Dave) Oliveria joined The Spokesman-Review in 1984. He currently is a columnist and compiles the Huckleberries Online blog and writes about North Idaho in his Huckleberries column.

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