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Telemedicine

The Oregon Medical Board supports a consistent standard of care and scope of practice for licensees, regardless of the delivery tool or business method enabling provider-patient communication. Telemedicine is an important tool in the delivery of health care. 

See the Oregon Medical Board's Statement of Philosophy on Telemedicine for additional guidance.

To support our licensees practicing via telemedicine, here are a few principles to understand about the relevant regulations:

  1. Telemedicine is not a separate form of medicine, but rather a delivery tool. It is the practice of medicine, through means of electronic communication or information technology between a health care provider at one location and a patient in another location. The same standards of care must be met regardless of the delivery method (in-person or via telemedicine).
  2. The practice of medicine occurs at the patient's location. The Oregon Medical Board regulates the practice of medicine within Oregon, and (with some limited exceptions) an Oregon medical license is required when providing care via telemedicine for patients located in Oregon. Physicians and PAs with an Active license or a Telemedicine license may practice via telemedicine in Oregon. Oregon Medical Board licensees intending to provide care to patients outside of Oregon must check with the other state's licensing board regarding licensure requirements.

    Other State Resources:
  3. When practicing via telemedicine, the licensee is expected to establish a provider-patient relationship and is subject to all the laws and regulations in the state where they are providing care. The Oregon Medical Board does not require an in-person visit to establish or maintain the provider-patient relationship; however, not all medical care can be appropriately provided via telemedicine.
  4. Oregon allows some limited exceptions for physicians and physician assistants to the requirement to hold an Oregon license.
  5. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued a 4th amendment to the Declaration under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act (PREP Act) to increase access to critical countermeasures against COVID-19. The amendment authorizes health care personnel who are permitted to order and administer a Covered Countermeasure (defined in the PREP Act) through telehealth in a state to do so for patients in another state so long as the health care personnel comply with the legal requirements of the state in which the health care personnel are permitted to order and administer the Covered Countermeasure by means of telehealth. 

References


What License Status do I Need to Practice Via Telemedicine?  

  • An Active status Oregon license allows a physician (MD/DO/DPM), physician assistant (PA), or acupuncturist (LAc) to practice via telemedicine in Oregon. To qualify for Active status, the provider must maintain a physical practice address in Oregon. An Active status licensee does not need a second, separate Oregon license to practice telemedicine.
  • A Telemedicine status Oregon license allows an out-of-state physician (MD/DO/DPM) or physician assistant (PA) who practices entirely outside of Oregon to provide care to patients located in Oregon via telemedicine. Telemedicine status is not currently available for acupuncture providers.  (see ORS 677.135-677.141 and OAR 847-025)

For more information or for assistance with determining the right license status for you, contact the Board's Licensing Department at licensing@omb.oregon.gov or 971-673-2700.


Additional Resources

The Federation of State Medical Boards offers a Telemedicine Policies: Board by Board Overview. For each state, the overview includes the type of license required, regulations or policy guidelines, and pending legislation.

The American Medical Association's Telemedicine Policy supports state-based licensure and outlines the components for quality telemedicine.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) expands telehealth coverage in the proposed 2022 Physician Fee Schedule. See the proposed rule for information