Iowa Medical Board Proposes Telemedicine Standards

The Iowa Board of Medicine began a rule-making process to establish standards of practice for telemedicine by establishing a rule that defines telemedicine, a valid physician-patient relationship, informed consent, and technology requirements for physicians who use electronic communications, information technology or other means of interaction between a physician in one location and a patient in another.

As is common in most of the states, the rule requires out-of-state physicians to have a valid Iowa medical license if they diagnose and treat patients located in Iowa.

The rule will be published in the Iowa Administrative Bulletin on October 29 and a public hearing will be held November 18. For the rule to become effective, the Board must vote to adopt it.

The Robert J. Waters Center for Telehealth and e-Health Law (CTeL) will provide comments to the Iowa Board on this proposed regulation using CTeL’s telemedicine guidelines as the criteria:

  • The telemedicine encounter must be equal or superior to the same encounter done in-person.
  • The telemedicine diagnosis and treatment must conform to the standard of care.
  • The telemedicine encounter must incorporate peripherals (e.g. otoscope, stethoscope) or diagnostic tests if necessary to confirm the diagnosis.
  • “On call” privileges used by a physician must be through an established agreement between the patient’s personal physician and covering physician, compliant with state law governing on call relationships between practitioners.

Click here for the Iowa Board of Medicine’s Proposed Telemedicine Standards. 

Click here for CTeL’s Proposed Telemedicine Standards.


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