Reminder: Audio-Only Telemedicine Law Effective July 25: WSHA New Law Implementation Guide Available

August 4, 2021

Beginning July 25, audio-only telemedicine became a covered and reimbursable service in Washington state. The new law (ESHB 1196) builds on Washington state’s telemedicine payment parity law by requiring reimbursement for audio-only telemedicine to be paid at “the same amount of compensation the carrier would pay the provider if the health care service was provided in person by the provider.”

Additionally, hospitals will be able to grant privileges to physicians working at distant-site hospitals for audio-only telemedicine. WSHA strongly supported ESHB 1196 and the legislation was a top priority in our 2021 legislative agenda. WSHA will continue to engage on this issue as the Office of the Insurance Commissioner and Health Care Authority implement the law. Read WSHA’s bulletin here. (David Streeter,

To assist members with implementation of the many bills passed during the 2021 legislative session, WSHA has prepared a New Law Implementation Guide with links to published and upcoming bulletins, webcasts, and other materials.  The implementation schedule identifies the new law, bill number, whether hospital action is required, the resource(s) WSHA is preparing, a timeline for the release of the resources, the effective date of the law, and the WSHA staff who can help address any follow up questions. The New Law Implementation Guide can be found here. (Alicia Eyler,


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