President Donald Trump has signed an executive order that could have a significant impact on Medicare. On Monday, Trump delivered remarks about telehealth and the once-temporary deregulations that have now become permanent.
"When the invisible enemy struck our shores, I took immediate action to eliminate regulatory barriers to telehealth, making it easier for patients to consult with doctors from safety and convenience," Trump claimed, referring to the coronavirus pandemic. "Really that have great safety and great convenience right from their homes. Today I'm taking action to ensure telehealth is here to stay. Moments ago in the Oval Office, I signed an executive order to make many of our regulatory reforms permanent."
"We've done some regulatory reforms that have had a tremendous impact on what we're doing," Trump continued. "On medicine and medical and what we're doing, we can do things that you couldn't believe. That even a year ago, two years ago, would not have been doable. We're enshrining the right of American patients to meet with their medical providers in a way that is best for them, and very, very convenient. And very talented people on the other side of the line, I have to tell you."
Telehealth allows for long-distance patient and clinician contact, care, advice, reminders, education, intervention, monitoring, and remote admissions. Sometimes referred to as telemedicine, it can be particularly useful in rural settings, where a lack of transport, a lack of mobility, decreased funding, or a lack of staff can restrict access to care.
This isn't the only executive order Trump has floated of late. It was also reported that he was considering drafting one to try and get his stimulus programs passed. "A lot of people are going to be evicted, but I'm going to stop it because I'll do it myself if I have to," Trump said. "I have a lot of powers with respect to executive orders, and we're looking at that very seriously right now." The comment about evictions raised eyebrows since the HEALS Act does not include any housing programs or extend the moratorium on evictions. Trump, who's up for reelection in less than 100 days, also said that he wants to stop people from being put into homeless shelters. "They are thrown out viciously," he added. "It's not their fault."