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The American Academy of Family Physicians is urging states to join the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact, saying it would help expand telehealth and give doctors more room to grow.
Source: Eyeing Telehealth, AAFP Urges States to Adopt Interstate Licensure
Leave it up to bureaucrats to do things slowly; eventually, they get around to the right thing, despite the current occupant of the White House.
While much of the attention was focused on expanded reimbursement for remote patient monitoring services, an overlooked section of the 2,378-page document detailed Medicare coverage for “Brief Communication Technology-Based Service” (HCPCS code G2012). Simply put, this new code gives providers an opportunity to use telehealth to check in with their patients at certain times on care management issues.
“The new code represents a sizeable change to allow providers to efficiently use new technologies to deliver medical care,” says Nathaniel Lacktman, a partner and healthcare lawyer with Foley & Lardner who chairs the firm’s Telemedicine Industry Team and co-chairs its Digital Health Work Group. “By reimbursing for virtual check-ins, the new code exemplifies CMS’ renewed vision and desire to bring the Medicare program into the future of clinically-valid virtual care services.”
Source: CMS Gives Telehealth a Nudge With Coverage for Virtual Check-Ins
The big news in the world of telemedicine is that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have finally done more than lip service to reimbursement for telemedicine services. In this world, there is an HCPCS code (“Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System,” 2018) for every conceivable service or product. Billing for both the actual visit and any imagery the helps the provider make further intervention decisions has separate codes and rates associated with them (not provided here). CMS is also finalizing policies to pay separately for new coding describing chronic care remote physiologic monitoring (CPT codes 99453, 99454, and 99457) and interprofessional internet consultation (CPT codes 99451, 99452, 99446, 99447, 99448, and 99449) (“Final Policy, Payment, and Quality Provisions Changes to the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule for Calendar Year 2019 | CMS,” 2018, pp. 4–5).
The final rules CMS released this week could advance virtual treatment further and faster than anything the government has done previously, advocates believe.
On Thursday, the agency finalized plans to reimburse physicians for virtually checking in with patients and remotely evaluating recorded images.
Thursday’s rule follows on the heels of a Wednesday CMS rule making it easier for home health agencies to get paid for remote monitoring of patients.
via Telemedicine’s ‘big day’ – POLITICO Continue reading
CMS is proposing to loosen restrictions on telehealth access and reimbursement in Medicare Advantage plans to spur more use of connected health technology.
As part of a 362-page proposal issued on October 26, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is proposing to eliminate geographical restrictions on telehealth access in MA plans by 2020, enabling those in urban areas to use connected health technology. The proposal would also give members more locations to access care, including their own home.
The upshot of the proposed changes, which will be posted in the Federal Register on November 1 and open for public comment through December 31, is that healthcare providers will be reimbursed for more uses of connected care technology.
Source: CMS Proposes Telehealth Expansion for Medicare Advantage Plans
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Telehealth experts say reimbursement should be based on access issues tied to appointments, rather than geography.
Source: Telehealth Barriers Should Be Defined by Access, Not Geography