The state government of Colorado is to expand telehealth services and address cardiac diseases through new legislation.

The SB24-168 bill was signed by Governor Jared Polis and sponsored by Alamosa Senator Cleave Simpson.

Under it, the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing must reimburse specific Medicaid members for the use of telehealth remote monitoring for outpatient services.

Expected to be implemented from 1 July next year, the initiative aims to use technology to bridge the healthcare gap in rural areas.

The bill also introduces a telehealth remote monitoring grant programme to offer financial assistance to outpatient healthcare facilities in rural counties or areas with a shortage of providers, making it easier for them to adopt telehealth solutions.

From 1 November next year, the legislation will introduce continuous glucose monitor coverage for Medicaid members, reflecting a broader commitment to chronic disease management.

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The grant programme funds will also support staff training in the use of remote monitoring equipment, ensuring that the workforce is equipped to deliver these modern healthcare services effectively.

Colorado State Representative Matthew Martinez said: “This law expands telehealth services into rural and underserved communities like mine so everyone can access the treatment and care needed to live a healthy life.

“Our bipartisan law also creates a rural-specific grant program to help our health care providers locate and implement telehealth technology in their practice.”

Governor Polis has also signed HB24-1219, a bill that aims to improve heart disease care and prevention, into law.

The bill was sponsored by Speaker McCluskie, Representative Mike Lynch and Senators Kyle Mullica and Byron Pelton.

It extends heart and circulatory malfunction benefits to part-time and volunteer firefighters, establishes a cardiac screening trust for peace officers and mandates employer participation in the multi-employer cancer trust.