AUGUSTA, GA. (WJBF)- The advancement of healthcare continues to grow through telehealth medicine and law makers are finding ways to make it more accessible for you.
Experts say the need for telehealth medicine is growing, and local representatives are finding ways to fill the gaps between rural and urban areas.
“Use telemedicine to augment that to make it more accessible and affordable for the patient. Taking the day off of work and driving an hour each way is not affordable even if it was given to you for free,” Representative Newton said.
Dr. Mark Newton represents parts of Augusta and Columbia County in the Georgia House of Representatives. He also founded MedNow Urgent Care. He says telehealth medicine is a convenient option for more than just rural areas.
“Personal transportation– we- many of us take for granted, being able to go here or there, that’s not available for a lot of people. So, it’s not just rural– though that’s the biggest beneficiary probably. It’s anyone that has a challenge with transportation.”
On the legislative end, lawmakers are working on how they can make telehealth care services more convenient for everyone.
“To try to figure out how we can, how we can incentivize this kind of thing so that people– we can spread the limited number of providers that we have. We can allow them to spread out and take care of patients across Georgia,” Representative Newton said.
Representative Newton wants to make sure that access to telehealth care medicine means that most needs can be met.
“Took two or three years with eyecare, we can’t take two or three years– in my opinion– on addressing what’s needed to get providers in mental health and maternity care to have the tools they need, incentives they need, to offer this option to people.”
Representative Newton says lawmakers will revisit detailed improvements to telehealth care next January.