Lewisville-based Teladoc Inc., a telehealth company providing on-demand healthcare, plans to expand its telehealth services in Dallas-Fort Worth and Texas following the recent passage of Senate Bill 1107. The measure, which deems telemedicine to be a viable source of care, allows Teladoc to reactivate its video capabilities to vet and examine patients.
The measure, passed by the House and Senate on May 11 and 18, respectively, and sent to the governor on May 19, allows patient-physician relationships to be established without an initial in-person visit. The bill will immediately go into law upon signature, except Section 13b regarding the insurance code, which plans to go into effect Jan. 1, 2018. That effectively protects the right of companies to practice and provide telemedicine services in Texas. Teladoc, which has operated in North Texas since 2005, currently has 2,500 clients statewide.
The Lewisville company was invited to collaborate with the Texas Legislature and other telemedicine experts in drafting the bill. According to Teladoc, telemedicine regulations were “thoroughly examined and debated.” The company hopes the bill’s success will serve as a bellwether for other states wary of telehealth services, showing that remote-care models can improve the U.S. healthcare system, starting in DFW and Texas.