Healthcare Innovation: Telehealth
Patients want it. Reimbursements now incentivize it. Technology enables it. What are you waiting for?
Implement telehealth in your practice now.
Telehealth is the ability for your physicians to provide services to patients remotely via electronic information and telecommunication technologies. It allows long distance patient/clinician contact and care, advice, reminders, education, intervention, monitoring and remote admissions.
With recent developments, telehealth offers unique financial benefits through three new code sets for services covered under specific conditions:
Virtual Check-Ins, officially titled “Brief Communication Technology-Based Service" Virtual check-ins are defined by a physician (or other qualified health care professional who can report evaluation and management services) digitally interacting for 5-10 minutes (telephone interactions or audio interactions enhanced with video) with an established patient.
Asynchronous Images and Video, officially titled “Remote Evaluation of Pre-Recorded Patient Information” Asynchronous telemedicine is efficient, patient-centered, and aligns with how many service providers deliver non-healthcare and online services today. The new code, HCPCS GRAS1, for “Remote Evaluation of Pre-Recorded Patient Information,” which would reimburse for a provider’s asynchronous review of “recorded video and/or images captured by a patient in order to evaluate the patient’s condition” and determine whether or not an office visit is necessary. This type of review is also referred to as “store-and-forward” communication technology.
Peer-to-Peer Internet Consults, officially titled “Interprofessional Internet Consultation. The third category of new virtual care codes is reimbursement for peer-to-peer internet consultations. Under the new CPT codes 994X6, 994X0, 99446, 99447, 99448, 94449, CMS will pay for: “Assessment and management services conducted through telephone, internet, or electronic health record consultations furnished when a patient’s treating physician or other qualified healthcare professional requests the opinion and/or treatment advice of a consulting physician or qualified healthcare professional with specific specialty expertise to assist with the diagnosis and/or management of the patient’s problem without the need for the patient’s face-to-face contact with the consulting physician or qualified healthcare professional.”