The Sun Is Definitely Shining In Florida For Out-of-State Registration

The telehealth and telemedicine world is ever-changing and we love seeing more states making these kinds of options available for more people. 

The Health Resources Services Administration defines telehealth as the use of electronic information and telecommunications technologies to support long-distance clinical health care, patient and professional health-related education, public health and health administration.

Florida just very recently passed HB 23 that takes effect on July 1, 2019. This will allow healthcare providers who are out-of-state to give medical consultations to patients within Florida.

Why Is This Important?

Florida is making it easier for nurse practitioners to be compliant and able to give Good Faith Evaluations in a state where they are not licensed. This opens up many opportunities for nurse practitioners and physicians to see more patients and it also helps patients have more access to medical attention via telehealth. 

Florida is one of the first few states to authorize this kind of law and it opens up the opportunity for other states to follow their direction. 

How Do You Register?

Out-of-State Registration. The new law authorizes out-of-state health care professionals, without a Florida license, to use telehealth to deliver health care services to Florida patients if they register with the Department of Health or the applicable board, meet certain eligibility requirements, and pay a fee. Foley and Lardner LLP explains the registration process to obtain an out-of-state registration the health care:

  1. Complete an application;

  2. Maintain an active, unencumbered license issued by another state that is substantially similar to the corresponding Florida license;

  3. Not have been the subject of disciplinary action relating to his or her license for the previous 5 years;

  4. Designate a registered agent for service of process in Florida;

  5. Maintain professional liability coverage, that includes coverage for telehealth services to patients in Florida, in amounts equal to or greater than what is required for a Florida-licensed practitioner;

  6. Not open an office in Florida or provide in-person health care services to patients located in Florida.

  7. Only use a Florida-licensed pharmacy or a registered nonresident pharmacy or outsourcing facility to dispense medicinal drugs to patients located in Florida. (Pharmacists only)

Licensure Exception. A health care professional who is not licensed to provide health care services in Florida, but who holds an active license to provide health care services in another state, may provide health care services using telehealth to a patient located in Florida without a Florida license and without an out-of-state registration if the services are provided:

  1. in response to an emergency medical condition

  2. (or) in consultation with a Florida-licensed health care professional who has ultimate authority over the diagnosis and care of the patient.

What Does This Mean?

For us at SpaKinect, this means that we can start looking for nurse practitioners that are compliant in Florida so that we can offer another state to our services. We try to have licensed and compliant practitioners and physicians in as many states as we can, and this new Florida law allows us to do just that.  

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, telemedicine is the future of healthcare. Except now, it’s the present. 

Kathleen McCarthy