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SCO-002: Regulation of Telemedicine

Regulation of Telemedicine: The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) supports the following principles governing the regulation of telemedicine:

  1. In order to protect the quality of the health care provided to Wisconsin residents and to provide for adequate redress of negligence claims, the practice of telemedicine should be regulated by the state of Wisconsin. In order for a physician to practice telemedicine into Wisconsin, that physician should be required to first secure a full license to practice medicine and surgery in Wisconsin.
  2. For the purposes of licensure to practice telemedicine in this state, and except as specified below, telemedicine shall be defined as follows. Telemedicine is the practice of medicine between a physician who is located outside of this state and a patient within this state. Telemedicine includes either the rendering of a written or otherwise documented medical opinion concerning the diagnosis or treatment of a patient, or the treatment of that patient by that physician. It does not matter by what means, electronic or otherwise, the physician communicates or obtains information about the patient or renders opinions or treatment.
  3. For the purposes of licensure to practice medicine in Wisconsin, telemedicine does not include the following:
    1. A physician who engages in the practice of medicine across state lines in an emergency.
    2. Occasional consultation or demonstration by electronic or other means by licensed physicians of other jurisdictions with licensed physicians of this state unless there exists an ongoing, regular, or contractual arrangement for providing these consultations or opinions.
    3. The practice of medicine between a physician and patient that occurs via electronic means across state lines that is a minor component of an ongoing physician- patient relationship between that physician and that patient that routinely occurs in the state in which that physician is located.
    4. A physician in another state who, as an employee or agent of a corporation, provides occupational consultative services, excluding services provided within a physician/patient relationship, involving the employees of that corporation in this state.
    5. The acts of medical specialists located in other jurisdictions who provide episodic consultations to physicians located in this state who practice in the same specialty.

It is the Society’s position that it is in the best interest of the patient that, in any telemedical physician-patient relationship, a physician licensed in Wisconsin should retain control and remain responsible for the provision of care for the patient. (HOD, 0414)*