CAHC’s Joel White was interviewed by Inside Health Policy on the divide over whether to permanently expand access to stand-alone employer-sponsored telehealth benefits that were temporarily put in place during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Joel White, president of the Council for Affordable Health Coverage (CAHC), agreed that Congress must extend the standalone telehealth coverage for workers that is set to expire in two weeks, telling lawmakers Wednesday it is essential that workers be able to access care on demand. Direct primary care — which can be facilitated via telehealth — also provides an individualized experience for patients, according to White.
“It’s like the old concept when the doctor would come to your home,” White said. “You’d see a family doctor and you’d get their attention and their time.”
That direct attention and time for that worker means they have good access to care, and with health savings accounts they can pay any other cost sharing obligations, according to White. He added that 90% of the claims for telehealth primarily focused on treating behavioral and mental health issues.