Dr. William Thompson of The CORE Institute Named to Gov. Doug Ducey’s Telehealth Task Force
Taskforce Aims to Create Longstanding Policy for Telemedicine in Arizona
Phoenix, AZ (August 10, 2021) – In July, Dr. William Thompson IV, an Interventional Spine and Pain Medicine Specialist at The CORE Institute, was officially appointed by Governor Doug Ducey to Arizona’s Telehealth Advisory Committee. Dr. Thompson will play a vital role in determining which telemedicine services are reimbursed by insurers throughout the state and in defining the best practice guidelines within telemedicine. Dr. Thompson has chaired the Legislative and Governmental Affairs Committee for the Arizona Medical Association since 2019 and has also served on task forces charged with helping create solutions for Arizona’s opioid epidemic.
During COVID-19, the use of telemedicine platforms became increasingly widespread and important in an effort for providers to maintain the continuity of care for their patients. These platforms also helped ease the burden on hospital emergency rooms as they dealt with the influx of patients with respiratory concerns. Dr. Thompson’s practice, The CORE Institute, quickly deployed a telemedicine program for those with orthopedic and spine needs in May of 2020 and has seen thousands of patients throughout Arizona since that time.
In May of 2021, Governor Ducey signed House Bill 2454, which expanded telemedicine for patients and ensured physicians receive equal compensation for telehealth services. It also allows out-of-state physicians to provide care to patients on telehealth platforms, so long as those physicians comply with all Arizona medical regulations.
In a statement, Governor Ducey said, “Ensuring Arizonans have access to safe and reliable medical services is a top priority,” said Governor Ducey. “Telehealth expands access to medical services for low-income families and those living in rural areas, protects vulnerable populations, and allows snowbirds visiting our state to receive telemedicine from their home state.”
“Telemedicine has shown that we can provide high quality, more convenient and cost-effective care to working Arizonans as well as those in rural populations,” said Dr. Thompson of The CORE Institute. “What we are working on now is the long-term legislation that will serve as the model for telemedicine going forward, not just for Arizona, but for many other parts of the country.”
Further discussions among the task force will also help distinguish the coverage for telemedicine visits that utilize solely audio connections versus those with both video and audio real-time connections.
“Dr. Thompson’s appointment to this task force is the embodiment of our mission at The CORE Institute,” said Dr. David Jacofsky, CEO of The CORE Institute. “We place a tremendous emphasis on improving the health of our community through research, education and community leadership. Through his continued efforts on the opioid task force and now as part of the telemedicine task force, Dr. Thompson exemplifies that commitment.”
About The CORE Institute
The CORE Institute was founded to fulfill a vision of excellence in patient care encompassing the entire spectrum of orthopedic and neurosciences care. The CORE Institute delivers integrated, comprehensive musculoskeletal and neurological care. It is built upon a foundation of pioneering research, academics, community service and a passion for excellence in patient care. The organization continues to be a leader in payor-reform initiatives, and it is at the forefront of systems-based quality programs, which drive value and improve the quality of patient care.