September 2023 – The Czech Republic should soon have its own legal regulation for telemedicine. A government proposal is on its way to the Parliament to introduce a basic definition of telemedicine. Until now, there has been no legal definition, which in practice has led to many uncertainties and questions, including the possibility and conditions of provision by healthcare providers, but also, for example, the admissibility of reimbursement by health insurance companies.
The proposed amendment to the Health Services Act should remove this uncertainty and will explicitly state that telemedicine is a legally permitted way of providing health services and will set out the framework conditions.
Telemedicine services are defined by the proposal as follows:
- The remote provision of services by means of information and telecommunication technologies or a medical device;
- The technical requirements for the quality and security of the communication are met, the communication channel is encrypted and the identity of the communicating parties is assured. Patient consent to record the communication is required.
The main forms of telemedicine permitted by law should be medical consultations, assessment of imaging and telemonitoring.
Certain telemedicine services may also be provided outside the healthcare facility (e.g. teleradiology, telepathology or telemonitoring). On the other hand, it is not envisaged that a separate authorisation could be granted only for the provision of telemedicine health services.
The bill will now be discussed by the Parliament of the Czech Republic. It is expected to take effect on 1 January 2024.
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