We previously reported on the new telemedicine regulations adopted by the Texas Medical Board (Board), which requires that patients be seen face-to-face or in person to establish a physician-patient relationship in order to provide telehealth services. The rules were to go into effect yesterday.
Teladoc Inc., a telehealth services provider, challenged the regulations and filed suit against the Board seeking a preliminary injunction to stop the regulations from going into effect under federal antitrust laws, saying it unlawfully restrained competition in the provision of health-care services.
The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas agreed with Teladoc and held that Teladoc had shown that it was likely to succeed on the merits of its claim that the rule violates Sherman Act Section 1, 15 U.S.C. § 1. This section makes unlawful any contract, combination or conspiracy to restrain trade. The Court found that Teladoc would be irreparably harmed if the rule went into effect and therefore, issued the injunction.