By: Peter Van Voorhis –
Telemedicine, the remote diagnosis and treatment of patients through telecommunications technology, represents the best hope for access to affordable health care worldwide. New groundbreaking technologies, which allow consumers to receive a remote eye exam and refill their eye prescription from the comfort of their home, are the beginning of a new era in health care innovation.
In typical fashion, big government lobbyists, led by the American Optometric Association (AOA) and Johnson & Johnson, have spent millions of dollars trying to defeat these measures in states like South Carolina, New Mexico, and Nevada, all of which have been quite unsuccessful.
In South Carolina, Governor Nikki Haley vetoed a bill that would have prohibited most uses of ocular telemedicine, saying, “it uses health practice mandates to stifle competition for the benefit of a single industry … putting us on the leading edge of protectionism, not innovation.” In Nevada, although lobbyists were originally successful in having Assemblywoman Jill Tolles peddle their legislative wishes, Tolles quickly caught on to their true intentions and pulled the anti-innovation bill from consideration.