Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Very Brief Blog: Telepharmacy regulations proposed; relationship to "tele-laboratory"

 We hear a great deal in the laboratory field about telemedicine and its impact on channels and processes for laboratory testing.   

Just for a perspective, one might look at new regulations proposed by the DEA regarding telepharmacy (86 Fed Reg 64096, November 17, 2021, 4 pp).   Here.  DEA seeks public responses to 39 questions.  See a discussion of the proposal by Valiente et al. of Foley Lardner, here.  By Murray of Dinsmore LLP here.  DEA accepting comments to January 18, 2022.

On the one hand, telemedicine and genetic testing will be critical to the treatment of some patients and a pillar of proper care for them.  On the other hand, Department of Justice has asserted (here) that many allegedly improper DME and genetic test orders are made by telemedicine (typically in cases where the physician had no patient contact).   Similarly, use of a "clinical care network" of contracted doctors ordered UBiome direct to consumer tests (see e.g. here), ending up in high-profile court filings.