Telehealth must remain an integral part of Australian health system

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AMA Submission to the Senate Select Committee on Financial Technology and Regulatory TechnologyThe AMA will today reiterate its call for broader access to Medicare-funded telehealth consultations with GPs and non-GP specialists to remain an integral part of the health system beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.AMA President, Dr Tony Bartone, will appear before the Senate Select Committee on Financial Technology and Regulatory Technology at 10.55am today to discuss the AMA submission, which promotes the retention of telehealth initiatives.Dr Bartone said that around 20 per cent of all Medicare-funded consultations with a doctor are now being provided by telehealth, either over the phone or via video, since temporary Medicare telehealth items were introduced in March in response to COVID-19.“Patients are clearly making the case for telehealth consultations to become a permanent feature of our health system for both GPs and non-GP specialists,” Dr Bartone said.“Telehealth is the norm in many parts of the world, providing patients with a convenient option to access care where they don’t need a physical examination. And the AMA has long championed the case for the introduction and expansion of telehealth in Australia.“Telehealth is not a substitute for face-to-face visits to the doctor, but …

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