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Florida State Telemedicine Prescribing Rules

by  |  General

imagesOur healthcare and business law firm previously published a blog post on the federal telemedicine rules.  Both Federal and State rules govern the provision of telemedicine.  Each state’s rules governing telemedicine are different, but the applicable laws and rules are generally found in the state medical board’s rules, insurance codes, and when applicable, Medicaid rules.  This post focuses specifically on Florida’s telemedicine prescribing rules.  Our firm previously posted an overview of Florida’s general telemedicine rules.  Keep in mind that this post discusses the current laws as of the date written and do not include any changes to the laws after being posted.  If you have questions about telemedicine rules or would like to discuss this blog post, you may contact our healthcare and business law firm at (404) 685-1662 (Atlanta) or (706) 722-7886 (Augusta), or by email, info@hamillittle.com. You may also learn more about our law firm by visiting www.hamillittle.com.

Florida Rules on Prescribing Based on a Telemedicine Visit

Florida is rather generous in its prescribing rules for telemedicine.  Before July 1, 2022, the law restricted prescribing all controlled substances except for certain situations.  Specifically, the law stated:

(c) A telehealth provider may not use telehealth to prescribe a controlled substance unless the controlled substance is prescribed for the following:

    1. The treatment of a psychiatric disorder;

    2. Inpatient treatment at a hospital licensed under chapter 20 395;

    3. The treatment of a patient receiving hospice services as defined in s. 400.601; or

    4. The treatment of a resident of a nursing home facility as defined in s. 400.021

In April 2022, however, the Florida legislature passed a law that allows a telemedicine provider to prescribe controlled substances with restrictions only for prescribing Schedule II controlled substances.  The underlined portion is what the new law changed.

(c) A telehealth provider may not use telehealth to prescribe a controlled substance listed in Schedule II of s. 893.03 unless the controlled substance is prescribed for the following:

      1. The treatment of a psychiatric disorder;

      2. Inpatient treatment at a hospital licensed under chapter 20 395;

      3. The treatment of a patient receiving hospice services as defined in s. 400.601; or

      4. The treatment of a resident of a nursing home facility as defined in s. 400.021

Fla. Stat. 456.46(2)(c).  The new law went into effect starting July 1, 2022.

As is clear from the above, medical practices must be thoughtful before prescribing from a telemedicine visit and must pay attention to laws as they are modified. If you have questions about telemedicine rules or would like to discuss this blog post, you may contact our healthcare and business law firm at (404) 685-1662 (Atlanta) or (706) 722-7886 (Augusta), or by email, info@hamillittle.com. You may also learn more about our law firm by visiting www.hamillittle.com.

*Disclaimer: Thoughts shared here do not constitute legal advice.