SMBO suspends enforcement of any regulations requiring in-person visits between providers and patients
The State Medical Board of Ohio (SMBO, Medical Board) met on Wednesday, March 18, 2020 and voted on several items to better allow licensees to respond and provide essential health care during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Beginning immediately, the Medical Board will suspend enforcement of any regulations requiring in-person visits between providers and patients. This exercise of enforcement discretion includes, but is not limited to, enforcement of regulations related to providers prescribing to patients not seen in-person by the physician.
Effective March 9, 2020 until Executive Order 2020-01D expires, providers can use telemedicine in place of in-person visits, without enforcement from SMBO. This includes, but is not limited to:
- Prescribing controlled substances
- Prescribing for subacute and chronic pain
- Prescribing to patients not seen by the provider
- Pain management
- Medical marijuana recommendations and renewals
- Office-based treatment for opioid addiction
Providers must document their use of telemedicine and meet minimal standards of care. The Medical Board will provide advance notice before resuming enforcement of the above regulation when the state emergency orders are lifted.