The Promise of Digital Health Exists, Connected Health Initiative Urges Congress to Achieve Potential

January 31, 2023—Today, ACT | The App Association’s Connected Health Initiative (CHI) released its priorities for the 118th Congress.  Americans benefit from an information and communications technology-enabled healthcare system, which CHI encourages Congress to enable and maintain through their policy considerations.

CHI urges the 118th Congress to remain focused on what happens to long term digital health delivery and to continue achieving the promise of digital health for all Americans.

CHI envisions the future of digital health, and the congressional action necessary to get there, as outlined below.

Number of Americans using wearable devices for their personal health needs:

30 %

Congress should either clarify in statute that certain wearable devices and software platforms are eligible for FSA and HSA reimbursement or else urge the IRS to treat wearable devices with healthcare applications.

Number of U.S. physicians currently use telehealth services with patient appointments:

43 %

With the public health emergency (PHE) coming to an end, Congress needs to preserve the flexibility to cover telehealth visits when appropriate.

CHI recommends that Congress:

  • Permanently enable Medicare to cover live audio and video visits regardless of the location of the patient.
  • Provide maximum statutory flexibility for CMS to cover telehealth visits where appropriate.

Number of Americans affected by healthcare data breaches:

46 million

CHI urges Congress to enact a federal privacy law of general applicability, setting a strong set of rules to prevent and penalize privacy and data security harms concerning health data outside the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) umbrella.

Number of Americans with subscriptions to broadband services:

110 million

The 117th Congress allocated an unprecedented $48 billion toward broadband infrastructure deployment and access programs through the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). The work is not done, however, and CHI urges the 118th Congress to conduct rigorous oversight to ensure that NTIA and its state and territory grantees prioritize the healthcare use case, and meet congressional intent by ensuring that broadband funding better supports caregivers and patients preventing and managing chronic and acute health conditions with digital health tools.

Full details of CHI congressional priorities can be read here.


About Connected Health Initiative: Connected Health Initiative (CHI) represents a broad consensus of healthcare and technology leaders seeking a policy environment that encourages the use of connected health innovations. We seek essential policy changes that will help all Americans benefit from an information and communications technology-enabled American healthcare system.