Telemedicine Flexibilities for Prescribing Controlled Medications Extended Through November 2024


The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) issued a temporary rule that extends the ability to prescribe controlled substances via telemedicine without in an in-person visit through December 31, 2024.

This extension authorizes DEA-registered practitioners to prescribe schedule II-V controlled medications via telemedicine through December 31, 2024, regardless of when the practitioner-patient relationship was established. The extension follows a temporary rule from May 2023 that allowed practitioners to prescribe a controlled substance without a previous in-person examination only for relationships established on or before November 11, 2023, and only until November 11, 2024.

The temporary rule comes on the heels of a two-day listening session on September 12 and 13, where DEA heard from health care practitioners, experts, advocates, patients, and other members of the public to help inform the agency’s regulations on prescribing controlled substances via telemedicine.

DEA is extending the telemedicine flexibilities it implemented during the COVID-19 public health emergency, which were tentatively slated to last through December 31, 2024. The agency will continue to evaluate the information it received during the listening session, as well as the 38,000 comments it received on proposed rules. DEA anticipates releasing a final rule on prescribing controlled substances via telemedicine in the autumn of 2024.

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