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COVID-19: Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some of the most frequently asked questions CMA has received during the COVID-19 outbreak. By default, the most recent answers will appear up top. You can also filter the FAQ by category. We will update this resource regularly.

More questions? Email communications@cmadocs.org.


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Do physicians need to be licensed in California in order to provide telehealth services to patients in a California hospital?

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In general, yes. Telehealth providers must still meet the definition of “health care provider” as set forth in Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 2290.5(3)(A), which requires California licensure. However, during the COVID-19 emergency, the Emergency Medical Services Authority (EMSA) has established an expedited process for hospitals and telehealth agencies to obtain approval to use physicians licensed in other states. EMSA will only accept requests for out-of-state medical personnel approval from a California medical facility, telehealth agency contracted with a California medical facility or a staffing agency providing staffing to California medical facilities that intends to utilize these resources.

Additionally, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has waived requirements that physicians providing Medicare services be licensed in the state where services are provided, as long the physician is enrolled in Medicare, has a valid license, is furnishing services to a state in an emergency and is not affirmatively excluded from practicing in any state subject to the emergency. This waiver does not apply to any state or local licensure requirements. Therefore, any physicians seeking to provide telehealth services in California should comply with the process established by EMSA.

| Categories: Hospital and Medical Staff, Telehealth | Return

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