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CHAPTER 34-52

TELEHEALTH UTILIZATION BY HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS

34-52-1    Definitions.

34-52-2    Treatment of patients through telehealth--Requirements.

34-52-3    Provider-patient relationship required--Exceptions.

34-52-4    Treatment and consultation recommendations.

34-52-5    Face-to-face examination using real-time audio and visual technology.

34-52-6    Prescribing drugs.

34-52-7    Informed consent.

34-52-8    Medical records.


34-52-1. Definitions.

Terms used in this chapter mean:

(1)    "Health care professional," as defined in § 58-17F-1;

(2)    "Health care facility," any office or institution where health services are provided, including any hospital, clinic, ambulatory surgery center, outpatient care facility, nursing home, assisted living facility, laboratory, or office of a health care professional;

(3)    "Originating site," a site where a patient is located at the time health care services are delivered to the patient via telehealth;

(4)    "Store-and-forward technology," secure electronic information, imaging, or data, including audio, video, and data communication that is transferred or recorded or otherwise stored for asynchronous delivery of health care services to a patient; and

(5)    "Telehealth," the use of secure electronic information, imaging, and communication technologies by a health care professional to deliver health care services to a patient, including interactive audio-video, interactive audio with store and forward, store-and-forward technology, and remote patient monitoring. Telehealth does not include the delivery of health care services through electronic means under the provisions of chapter 27A-10, or the delivery of health care services through an audio-only telephone, electronic mail message, text message, mail service, facsimile transmission, or any combination thereof.

Source: SL 2019, ch 156, § 1; SL 2020, ch 151, § 1.


34-52-2. Treatment of patients through telehealth--Requirements.

Any health care professional treating a patient in the state through telehealth shall be:

(1)    Fully licensed to practice in the state or employed by a licensed health care facility, an accredited prevention or treatment facility, a community support provider, a nonprofit mental health center, or a licensed child welfare agency under § 36-32-76; and

(2)    Subject to any rule adopted by the applicable South Dakota licensing body.

Consultation between a resident health care professional and a nonresident health care professional under this chapter is governed by § 36-2-9.

Source: SL 2019, ch 156, § 2; SL 2020, ch 165, § 49.


34-52-3Provider-patient relationship required--Exceptions.

Telehealth may not be utilized by a health care professional with respect to any patient located in the state in the absence of a provider-patient relationship. Any health care professional who utilizes telehealth shall ensure that a proper health provider-patient relationship is established and includes:

(1)    Verifying and authenticating the location and, to the extent reasonable, identifying the requesting patient;

(2)    Disclosing and validating the health care professional's identity and applicable credentials, as appropriate;

(3)    Obtaining appropriate consent for treatment from a requesting patient after disclosure regarding the delivery models and treatment methods or limitations;

(4)    Establishing a diagnosis through the use of acceptable medical practices, including patient history, mental status examination, physical examination, and appropriate diagnostic and laboratory testing;

(5)    Discussing with the patient the diagnosis and its evidentiary basis and the risks and benefits of various treatment options;

(6)    Ensuring appropriate follow-up care for the patient; and

(7)    Providing a visit summary to the patient or consult note.

Exceptions to the requirements of this section include on-call, cross coverage situations, and consultation with another health care professional who has an ongoing health care provider relationship with the patient and agrees to supervise the patient's care and emergency treatment.

Source: SL 2019, ch 156, § 3.


34-52-4Treatment and consultation recommendations.

Treatment and consultation recommendations made through telehealth via a health care professional shall be appropriately provided and within the health care professional's scope of practice, training, and experience.

Source: SL 2019, ch 156, § 4.


34-52-5Face-to-face examination using real-time audio and visual technology.

A health care professional using telehealth to provide medical care to any patient located in the state shall provide an appropriate face-to-face examination using real-time audio and visual technology prior to diagnosis and treatment of the patient, if a face-to-face encounter would otherwise be required in the provision of the same service not delivered via telehealth.

Source: SL 2019, ch 156, § 5.


34-52-6. Prescribing drugs.

Without a proper provider-patient relationship, a health care professional using telehealth may not prescribe a controlled drug or substance, as defined by § 34-20B-3, solely in response to an internet questionnaire or consult, including any encounter via telephone.

Source: SL 2019, ch 156, § 6; SL 2020, ch 151, § 2.


34-52-7Informed consent.

A health care professional using telehealth shall follow any applicable state or federal statute or rule for informed consent.

Source: SL 2019, ch 156, § 7.


34-52-8Medical records.

A health care professional or the originating site treating a patient through telehealth shall:

(1)    Maintain a complete record of the patient's care;

(2)    Disclose the record to the patient consistent with state and federal laws; and

(3)    Follow applicable state and federal statutes and regulations for medical record retention and confidentiality.

Source: SL 2019, ch 156, § 8.


Back to Title 34

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