Access to Telemedicine — not for pain patients

Founded in 2002, Teladoc describes itself as one of the first and largest U.S. telemedicine services, with a network of about 700 doctors and 11 million patients nationwide. About 2.4 million patients are in Texas.  Telemedicine is the increasingly common practice of conducting diagnosis and treatment, including prescribing drugs, remotely using phones or interactive video.

In April the Texas Medical Board, which regulates the practice of medicine in the state, adopted a new rule requiring doctors to meet their patients face-to-face before prescribing drugs. The rule was to take effect this week.

Teladoc sued the board, claiming that the rule violated the federal Sherman Act, an antitrust law that prohibits unreasonable restraint of trade.  In Friday’s order, U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman said Teladoc had shown it was likely to succeed in its lawsuit. His order stops the rule from taking effect while the case is pending…

Even though pain patients need services like telemedicine, because of the DEA, they don’t have access to them.  This is what’s called discrimination.

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