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EDITORIAL COMMENT

      As Williams and Talwar comment, policy surrounding telemedicine is forthcoming and needed. During the initial emergence of COVID-19 the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) temporarily expanded insurance coverage to include telemedicine.

      CY 2022 medicare physician fee schedule final rule extends telehealth benefits. JD Supra. Accessed December 13, 2021.https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/cy-2022-medicare-physician-fee-schedule-2997542/

      Similarly, most private insurances followed the path of CMS and expanded their coverage as well. CMS is finalizing their policy to extend telemedicine coverage into 2023 as many private insurances are doing the same.

      CY 2022 medicare physician fee schedule final rule extends telehealth benefits. JD Supra. Accessed December 13, 2021.https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/cy-2022-medicare-physician-fee-schedule-2997542/

      While coverage is being extended, it remains unclear if this coverage will be permanent, and whether or not telemedicine will continue to offer fair and equitable reimbursements for services.

      Telehealth should be lasting care mode, not a temporary measure | American Medical Association. Accessed December 13, 2021.https://www.ama-assn.org/practice-management/digital/telehealth-should-be-lasting-care-mode-not-temporary-measure

      It is clear from our study that telemedicine can be effectively rolled out in a clinical setting and reach a broad population of patients, and while disparities exist, this should not deter providers from implementing telemedicine into their practice. While most of existing literature on telemedicine has focused on access and satisfaction, further study is needed into outcomes in urology. If future data can support that outcomes are equivalent to in-person visits, then this would further support legislative efforts to maintain telemedicine as a permanent fixture of the urologic care delivery pathway and reach at-risk patients.

      REFERENCES

      1. CY 2022 medicare physician fee schedule final rule extends telehealth benefits. JD Supra. Accessed December 13, 2021.https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/cy-2022-medicare-physician-fee-schedule-2997542/

      2. Telehealth should be lasting care mode, not a temporary measure | American Medical Association. Accessed December 13, 2021.https://www.ama-assn.org/practice-management/digital/telehealth-should-be-lasting-care-mode-not-temporary-measure