Members of the Florida Board of Medicine and the Florida Board of Osteopathic Medicine gathered in Orlando, Florida on September 9, 2013, for a special Joint Telemedicine Subcommittee meeting. The subcommittee, established during the August 2013 Board of Medicine meeting, is comprised of six Board of Medicine members and three Board of Osteopathic Medicine members. Present at the meeting were Chairman Dr. James Orr, Dr. Sarvam TerKonda, and Dr. Merle Stringer from the Board of Medicine and Dr. Joel Rose and Dr. Anna Hayden from the Board of Osteopathic Medicine.
The subcommittee was designed to address the growing field of telemedicine in the State of Florida. Dr. Orr opened the meeting by giving the formal definition of telemedicine and stating that "the need is evident when one understands that we have a growing population expected to reach some 360 million by 2030.” He explained that technological advances and public comfort with technology use "sets the stage” for the increasing use of telemedicine services. In closing, Dr. Orr spoke for all of the members of the subcommittee stating that the goal of this subcommittee meeting was "to obtain all possible available information input and review and discuss that input so that we can move towards a rough draft of a rule.”
After the Chairman's introductory comments, the members discussed the advantages and limitations of telemedicine. The public was invited to attend and several interested parties presented their support for and/or concern about telemedicine, each suggesting issues to be considered during the process of rule development.
The next meeting of the Joint Telemedicine Subcommittee will be held in Orlando, FL on October 3, 2013, in conjunction with the Surgical Care/Quality Assurance Committee meeting. The Surgical Care Committee is scheduled to meet at approximately 2:00p.m., immediately following the Expert Witness Committee Meeting. The members of the Board of Osteopathic Medicine will be joining the Board of Medicine's Surgical Care/Quality Assurance committee to further discuss the issues of telemedicine. The public is welcome to attend and participate.
For more information on upcoming meetings of the Joint Telemedicine Subcommittee, visit our website at www.FLBoardofMedicine.gov.