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Telemedicine Coming to Florida

Dr. Juan Manuel Romero, a cardiologist at a hospital in Ciudad Obregon in Sonora, Mexico, engages in a pre-op consultation with Alma Guadalupe Xoletxilva and her doctor, Edgar Cuevas, who are 400 miles away in La Paz, Baja California. Photo: Intel Free Press

2015 is the year for telemedicine in Florida, legislators said at a conference in Orlando Monday.

Politicians are taking a more free-market approach. State Senator Aaron Bean said a proposed telemedicine bill is likely to pass this session.

Bean oversees state senate health policy. He told a business-friendly health conference audience a key will be having doctors use remote video and other tools for patients using Medicaid, the public health insurance program for the poor.

“Yes, and that’s what’s really going to be the spark,” Bean said. “We have 3.7 million people that get their health care through our Medicaid program, and we think it’s a fantastic way to increase quality, increase visits, but yet do it in an economical way that we think we might even be able to save money by using this technology.”

A telemedicine bill failed in the 2014 legislature. Bean says the current bill uses a more free market approach.

WMFE is a partner with Health News Florida, a statewide collaborative reporting on health care.

Health reporting on WMFE is supported in part by AdventHealth.

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Abe Aboraya

About Abe Aboraya

Health Reporter

Abe Aboraya started writing for newspapers in High School. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in 2007, he spent a year traveling and working as a freelance reporter for the Seattle Times and the Seattle Weekly, and working for local news websites in the San Francisco Bay area. Most recently Abe ... Read Full Bio »